are a form of poetry that can be read in a variety of ways. Though all of the words on any given blinklist comprise the full poem, you may read the words in any order whatsoever, any number of the words, or, by standing back and gazing just right, all of the words at once. In some blinklists, the words in each color can be read in groups (often in threes), but in others not. The colors of the words against the black background allow the eye to leap around, rather than to read automatically in lines, and the oil pastel in which they are written catches the light so that different words leap out from each blinklist depending on the type and direction of light and the position of the viewer. Thus they are best displayed in rooms with natural light, large enough for the viewer to read them from various directions.
Or as Bob Holman describes them, “Words artfully cavorting cross a huge mural, to be read in any or no direction: Blink and it’s a whole new poem.”
There are a couple dozen blinklists available for showing, some for sale and some not. I am also available to create them on commission.
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28 x 40 “
28 x 40 “
22 x 28 “
54 x 84 “
3 x 3.2″
These and other calligraphic glyphs were created for Poems for Teeth, published by We Press in 2005.
glyph of nurturing
2.75 x 3″
They were drawn using Japanese brushes and India ink on 100% rag paper
glyph of discernment
2.75 x 2.25″
The book contains one poem for each tooth, and a glyph to correspond with each poem.
1.5 x 3.5″
The poems, along with the glyphs, each focus on an aspect of human experience.
glyph of rebellion
2 x 4″
The glyphs from the book are available for showing, along with many others which are for sale.
Möbii and Other Objects
I occasionally work literally off the page, producing poetry and prose on three-dimensional objects.
One of my favorite forms to play with over the years has been the Möbius strip, a one-sided piece of paper that can essentially contain a poem (or design, or whatever) that has no beginning or end. They’re made by giving a long strip of paper a half-twist, then joining the ends. (See link for details.) It’s terribly fun to bring a bunch of small blank möbii to a workshop and see what folks come up with, generally sentences or phrases that run together infinitely. I’ve created a few dozen in this size, as this one, which as many is untitled.
The largest möbius poem is a bit more involved. It is handwritten on a Möbius strip consisting of sixteen sheets of loose leaf paper. The entire text runs about 13.5 feet. The title:
nameless, unreasoning, unjustified clarity
Then of course one must occasionally write on things, using objects as a surface instead of paper. This has more of a history than you might think, going back to the first pictographs on cave wall. What, we didn’t always have paper?! Then of course there’s good ol’ graffiti, with a bit of history itself.
I prefer writing on everyday objects, sometimes using paint or ink, and sometimes simply attaching the poems to the objects. One of my favorites is a series of twenty haiku I wrote about smoking, then attached one to each cigarette in a box. The result: “Filter Cigarette Sentences”.
You can read all of these haiku online, and learn how to make your own box of Filter Cigarette Sentences, in Newark Review vol. 2.
Put a word on it!