Tag Archives: Cubist Poetry

Found in Geneva

Since the beginning of January, Anna and I have been collabor-arting internationally. I’m living in Geneva for a couple on months, working on a poetry pamphlet. Back when we had our first ‘meeting’ (a hearty soup and chat at Anna’s live-work space in Bow), Anna and I discovered we’re both interested in objects – in particular, things we leave behind and things that are, or are becoming, obsolete. We decided to look out for objects in the street (‘found objects’), and see if anything came out of them. Anna started by sending me a purple maraca in the post. The postman was bemused by the sound the package made:

Anna's found maraca

I went for a walk looking out for something to find, and I lost my purple mitten. Anna had given me the task of writing a cubist poem about a found object. I wasn’t sure what a cubist poem would look like, so I did what anyone would do and googled Cubist Poetry. Then I wrote this poem in two versions, from the mitten (unfortunately not photographed in situe):

A la recherche d'un object trouvé, j'ai perdu moi-même un object

(1) The Purple Mitten

Alone on a bench

a purple mitten

surveyed the city.

The sky opened its mouth

licked up the landscape

for its wedding dress.

A piece of woollen tubing

bristled by wet, waited

for the end.

(2) Purple Mitten

Alone on bench

purple mitten

surveys city

Sky opens mouth

licks landscape

wedding dress

Wet wool

pipe smokes

Colour ends

I’m not sure these count as ‘cubist poems’, but they were fun to write.

Here’s another object I found on a morning walk – a cigar box (cigars are common in Geneva, unlike in London), that had been run over by a car near the cathedral.

Squashed cigar box

There’s an exciting object in the post to Anna as we speak, but I don’t want to spoil the surprise…

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