Chance Poetics (part 2)

Words in a Line?

Chance Poetics?

Prompted by a challenge this week, I invited readers to take part in an experimental survey that allowed in a limited, almost “I Ching” way, to create a brief poetic phrase—something I call “Chance Poetics“.  It’s open any time you’d like to try it. I’d like to expand it into a series of  writing “warm up” exercises.

Meanwhile, I promised to follow-up with results so far.

Before I tell you the most common result, here’s what I thought about as I waited for responses:

If this word-play experiment were actual research, I would have to post the form in assorted versions with the word options rearranged.  I would have to measure  and compare results from each.

I wondered if people would tend to choose the first option in each section and arrive at: Yesterday (was another) place. If, however, the first options were Hope and window, I imagine those words would be most often selected.

As it is, I had only one version, and yes, as predicted, the most common result was: Yesterday was another place.

UPDATE:  we now have a tie for most often selected:  Hope was another window.  I like both—I’m glad I don’t have to choose only one.  That reminds me: yes, you can select the words by thoughtful choice (an interesting experience) or (as the title suggests) by chance.  For example, you can close your eyes and point, or flip a coin (heads or tails) to come up with a totally chance result.

COMING UP: The next experiment I want to post is something I call a Touch Tapestry, which you can print and place on a table. Then you can toss a few dried beans, grains of rice or small buttons onto it, to find what poetic suggestion—by chance—opens up to you.  If a Touch Tapestry appears on a vertical monitor, you may have to close your eyes and point!  Whichever way you view it—on  paper, monitor or mobile device, I’d like to hear from you how you use it!



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