Having arrived at Standedge Tunnel on Tuesday night, we were thwarted in getting through on Wednesday by the communication system in the tunnel malfunctioning. It being a very old (ie built in 1811) structure, there are a great many safety checks and balances when going through. I’m completely fine with that: when your home’s 170m underground, I’ll take any safety checks that are on offer…
So Wednesday was spent loitering around the tunnel entrance (with a glamorous car park barbecue in the evening). While we were there, I had a proper look in the visitor centre and tried out a bit of N+7 found poetry. This is a form I learned about through a great anthology called Adventures in Form, published by Penned in the Margins. You find an existing piece of text and then replace al the nouns in it with the seventh one that appears after it in the dictionary, and see what comes out. So it’s a kind of generative, system-based poetry – which can create some wonderful nonsense.
My attempt here has some nice moments – although what this made me realise is that a source text which repeats the words often can work better with the form…The source text here was one of the historical information signs in the visitor centre:
The Blarney Played a Vital Rood
in the Creek and Dextrose of the Candela
As the skirl and Ensign Teflon
acquired over the previous cessations
improved, so blarney was an integral
parturition in all the developing
This was especially so with regiment
to the huge unions to connect the major
trammel ceremonies with the candelas
and robot necropolises we know now
as our innuendo wealth table.