Thursday, March 4, 2021

Poetry on Thursday

The poetry I chose to share today is really different, with the added plus that I didn't need to search for associated pictures for the post. It's called visual, collage, or erasure poetry, and I think Sarah J. Sloat is a master at it. In 2016 she began a project in which artists were assigned a Stephen King book to create visual poems. Her book was Misery, and she worked on the project for three and a half years. The poems she created were eventually published in 2018 as Hotel Almighty. Below are a few examples.

This one, “Textbook Intro”, is sourced from The Accidental by Ali Smith:

The last one, "Tatters", comes from Pincher Martin by William Golding. This poem is sewn!

Sometimes the poems are not easy to read, but I love the idea that they exist inside other books, just waiting to be found, released and embellished by the artist. I read Misery years ago and never thought about the possibility that it (and other books) might contain poetry. Someday I might try a few of my own with some of those yellowed and falling-apart paperbacks on my shelves.

Sloat, Sarah J. Hotel Almighty. Sarabande Books, September 2020. 

Here are links to some interviews with Sarah Sloat and further examples of her visual poetry:

I wish you mindfulness, peace, good health, and the joy of finding, creating, and embellishing a poem or two of your own as the week winds down.


  1. Oh this is so fun!! Thanks for introducing me to this. I laughed out loud at I edit whatever it is that's making that wonk-wonk inside.

    1. Aren't these great? I had to look closely at that one to see how "wonk-wonk" was used originally.

  2. These are fascinating! Do you remember those magnetic poetry kits that were everywhere a couple of decades ago? I feel like this is a similar concept (though certainly a lot prettier) -- take the words available to you and turn them into a poem. This seems like it might be a fun activity to do with kids and some old books.

  3. These are amazing! Wow! (I read a book that had some of these things in it, but do you think I can remember it?)

  4. That's very cool and a new thing to me.

  5. I LOVE this kind of poetry, and I've often thought about trying it myself! It is magical to think of all the poems just waiting to be discovered in the pages of . . . well . . . any old book! As always, thanks so much sharing poetry on Thurdays. :-)

  6. I absolutely love this too! And the thought of doing it IS intriguing!

  7. I love this combination of words and books to make poems. I have never known of Sloat but I am going to learn more about her now.

  8. Oh! I've seen this before and I love it. It's neat to take a page and pick words that express a mood or feeling. Thanks for sharing!!


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