Musing on food and cooking ...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Great "Found" Poem

I am very fascinated by the concept of the "found" poem. Poems can be found in recipes, emails, letters, interviews in articles. They are just standard, everyday communications, but something about them lends themselves to arrangement, or they have a certain rhythm, or, well, something intangible. I have only in my life ever found one "found" poem. I arranged this in the mid 90s, using the words of Phan Thi Kim Phuc in an interview she gave to Time magazine. Phan was pictured in the iconic photo of napalm victims at Trang Bang in 1972.

Nong Qua/Too Hot

I see
the bombs. I run,

run, and run.
My feet are not
burned. My clothes ...

I tear them off. The burning
doesn't stop. I keep running.
I yelled - too
hot. Too hot.

I run, run, and

My sister came to see
me. My mother
said, "Don't
cry. Don't cry anymore.
We can take care of everything

the pain. You alone
have to suffer it."
So I don't cry
anymore. I try.
I try. I run, run,
and run. I see
the bombs. I see

the fire.
Too hot.

I received a beautiful poem in an email yesterday. I don't think the sender intended it to be a poem, but it is... I post it here, and yet omit the author's name, to protect the guilty....

my phone is ringing

from off campus.

I see a man in the water, arms flaying, . . .

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