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BRITISH-IRISH-POETS  1998

BRITISH-IRISH-POETS 1998

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Subject:

Modern Poetry

From:

"Ernest Slyman" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Ernest Slyman

Date:

Tue, 3 Mar 1998 21:03:11 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (63 lines)

Modern Poetry

        --- Don’t forget to wear you words. It’s cold out there.

A book of verse is an ornamental fabric
consisting of a decorative openwork
of threads that have been twisted, looped,
and intertwined to form patterns.
As so defined, verse is distinguished
from open-textured woven fabrics;
from knotted openwork such as net and macramé;
from tatting, a wordy knotted fabric
made with a small shuttle;
and from crocheted and knitted openwork,
in which the fabric is formed
by looping a single thread
into a sentence by means of a hook (crochet)
or long needles (knitting).
All these techniques, however,
are capable of producing delicate,
word-like fabrics that are often grouped
with true words in a more general use of language.

II.
Two kinds of true words exist:
needlepoint words and bobbin, or pillow words.
The line between words and extremely wordlike embroidery
 is difficult to draw; Bobbin words, on the other hand,
derived at least in part from the nimble literary qualities
and twisting techniques used in forming decorative tassels
from the fringe ends of woven verse.
In needlepoint words—extremely difficult to make
and rarely practiced as an amateur craft—
a needle, thread, and piece of parchment or paper are used.

III
The social and economic changes of the 19th century
lessened the general enthusiasm for knitting with words,
and as a craft, dressmaking, it has not entirely disappeared.
Handmade words had more prestige for garments.
The poets continued to be word-making centers,
sewers of fine sentences. Verses warm as flax or wool.
But other writers also produced different kinds of words.
New varieties of words developed. Fragile needlepoint words.
Bobbin words. Silk words. Machine-made words
became more widespread. The success of machine manufacture,
together with the social changes resulting from World War I,
dealt a deathblow to the word-making profession.
Words making by hand survived somewhat feebly
in some of the old word centers,
and it is occasionally practiced as an amateur craft.

Ernest Slyman
HomePage
www.geocities.com/soho/7514
email: [log in to unmask]





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