Occasions

The persons concerned in consideration of
finished pleasure have on certain occasions a
little eternity, a leisure in life of brilliant colours,
a dense pattern long upon the smooth ceremony
of unconscious sex. We should call it the
perfect dusk, known also as to ebb in these
circumstances, shadows of an old man who
smoked cigarettes when grown mellow on such
a privilege. On this occasion a part of the after-
noon was left, itself delightful, and time for tea
with his face turned to a large cup, and now a
little feast of a different quality at this interval
for an elder, and what had waned was with much
circumspection votaries of when shadows were.

(cut-up: Portrait of a Lady by Henry James)

On the Found

‘Occasions’ is from On the Found, a collection of found poems based on the notional American novel canon (the whole available to download free as a pdf – see the site contents bar). This was my second significant found poetry project in 2017 after completing my first with the notional English novel canon in that same year.

There are many poems I am pleased to have found (two per novel – one from the opening and the other from anywhere else in the text), enjoying the process and outcomes. Since producing, I have reflected on the historical and cultural presumptions of both ‘canons’ and thus understand how narrowed they are by this. However, individual found poems stand for me as positive examples of that experimental process and I will share a few now and then.

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