A Portrait By Love & Sadness – Writing 201 ‘Found Poem’

strange weather in tokyo book cover picture

A story of time,
As seasons pass,
Of dream-like
Love;
A teacher of heartbreak, which breaks hearts, and
Sadness;
Distance from intimacy and intimacy with distance,
With subtlety time paints,
Portraits,

back cover markup


I wrote this for wordpress bloggingU writing 201 poetry course day 6. The challenge today was to write a poem based on the prompt word ‘face’, using ‘found poetry’ and including ‘chiasmus’

I decided to use the back cover of a book I am reading right now; strange weather in tokyo, by hiromi kawakami, translated by allison markin powell.

The book itself is beautifully written and reads like poetry to me so far.

It was quite challenging using a restricted set of words. I decided to go with the theme of our portraits showing our experiences in life; think laughter lines, worry lines etc. And I included the idea of love and sadness which I think affect how we look.

The chiasmus were fun to think about, I am not sure how well they work. The first one heartbreak and breaks hearts. The idea being that if we are hurt and have our heart broken we may find it harder to love in future and hence cause heart break in return; not sure if the prose is strong enough to get this across. The distance / intimicy one, I simply fell into having wanted to balance having one for love with one for sadness.

Edit: after the original posting I had to remove ‘by, how and our’ which weren’t on the back cover; i only noticed when adding the second picture.

9 Comments

    1. thank you so much amanda :) I think in one way the limited text helped with this chiasmus as it was easier to think which words could work both ways with each other.

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  1. It is a lovely poem in its own right. Funny, I just thinking this morning about using random comments on blogs to write a short story. (I recently read of someone who wrote a story using the example sentences from the dictionary.) This poem is similar but very much your own work. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Thank you so much. I had the book in my bag today when I sat down in a coffee shop to have a look at the assignment. I originally was going to try say 5th word from several pages as with one of Bens suggestions, but I got; it, is, and, but, that, sensei lol – nightmare.

      my other idea was to goto the bookshop and find a shelf of spines that looked interesting.

      but then as I was looking at the book I noticed the vocabulary the reviewers used on the back page was very descriptive and the word portrait was there! I was sold haha.

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