Based on Peter Schneider’s poem ‘Lost in Plain Sight’
I wake up, waiting, wanting to speak my mind, I think. Why do I have this empty cup clenched in my right hand? To fill in with... name, date? I greet my neighbor (isn't her name Susan?) with trivia, punch line. She smiles awkwardly, knowingly, waving to somebody somewhere behind me. The flash of a red fox on the Kansas Prairie, like the spell of being lost in plain sight on the porch or in the yard, is unnerving. A supposedly straight-man is hiding somewhere out back, just out of sight, who smiles maliciously a hundred times a day, plotting to take me away. Strangely, I seem to remember his thin, pale lips. Slow. No time but now, looking for some clue. Who am I waiting for, what am I looking for? How did I end up here, so very lost and alone? Where... did Susan go? Somewhere recently, I turned against a blustery January wind along a line fence, anything to break free of these disoriented, coursing thoughts. How am I to go on alone in an endless, empty space like this? My short-term memory has no address but here. And then it fails to show. It moved, but it is still out there somewhere. It was there by the window, I think, and then… It is lost, a dried, lazy ragweed stalk, holding the shadow of its life. No… my life. Oh God, where am I? I've lost my short-term memory. Susan...
d’Verse Poetics Prompt
‘Lost poems and Found poetry’
For this challenge, poets have two options to choose from:
- Select ONE of the ‘lost poems’ presented to us (or one of your own finding where something or someone is lost) and write your poem as response with the resolution of finding, being found or returned, etc.
- Select ONE of the ‘lost poems’ presented to us (or one of your own finding where something or someone is lost) and re-write is as a ‘Found poem’. It does not have to be as rigid as an erasure poem, for you can add in some of your own words or even reorder it.
I opted for the second option: to create a ‘Found Poem’, making use of every word and punctuation mark in Peter Schneider’s poem ‘Lost in Plain Sight’. I also add a significant amount of my own text, which I marked in green.
What is a ‘Found Poem’?
Found poems take existing texts and refashion them, reorder them, and present them as poems. The literary equivalent of a collage, found poetry is often made from newspaper articles, street signs, graffiti, speeches, letters, or even other poems.
Lost in Plain Sight
By Peter Schneider
Somewhere recently I lost my short-term memory. It was there and then it moved like the flash of a red fox along a line fence. My short-term memory has no address but here no time but now. It is a straight-man, waiting to speak to fill in empty space with name, date, trivia, punch line. And then it fails to show. It is lost, hiding somewhere out back a dried ragweed stalk on the Kansas Prairie holding the shadow of its life against a January wind. How am I to go on? I wake up a hundred times a day. Who am I waiting for what am I looking for why do I have this empty cup on the porch or in the yard? I greet my neighbor, who smiles. I turn a slow, lazy Susan in my mind, looking for some clue, anything to break the spell of being lost in plain sight.
Let’s write poetry together!
When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.–Ben Harper (b. 1969)
Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!