Saturday, November 7, 2015

Poetry Prompt #40: Visual Poetry

Visual poetry is poetry or art in which the visual arrangement of text, images and symbols is important in conveying the intended effect of the work. Confusingly, it is sometimes referred to as concrete poetry, a term that predates visual poetry (Wikipedia).

When speaking in terms of visual poetry, the platform offers a wide variety of composition and assemblage to choose from.  Visual poetry can include anything from poetry for which words and text have been enhanced and typed across a photo (or a series of photos) or it can entail a collage of words and images that work together to portray a certain message.  Anything from geometric representation (poetry that constructs a shape) to video poetry falls into the category of visual poetry.

Consider the following examples:

This poem was created simply by adding text to a photo.

This simple text poem is constructed in such a way that the message seems to be telling us that love is messy, unorganized, sporadic.

This poem incorporates text symbols with an assemblage of images that all seem to relate to women, body image, and the role of women in society (at least that is my interpretation).

What I  appreciate most in my own exploration and practice of visual poetry is the freedom of form.  Visuals and ideas are so much easier expressed with pictures and shapes.  Visual poetry entails such a broad platform (concrete text to image only) that I find myself more freely describing and dabbling in subject matter that I might not otherwise feel comfortable doing with the basic free-verse poetry form.  You can look at one of my own examples of visual poetry here.

Here are some other sites with inspiring images and information on the process of visual poetry:

Women's Visual Poetry (so many amazing examples from a diverse group of women poets)

Try These Quick Visual Poetry Generators

A Downloadable Generator (it's totally safe, I have used this myself)

So, the challenge for this week is to create your own visual poem!  I'd love to see the end result if you feel like sharing.

Until next week, happy and bountiful writing to you all.