The Found Poem of Shame

“Don’t address the reader in the second person,” I told my students. “Find a way around it. Don’t tell me what I think or do. I mean, Christ, once or twice is okay, but every other line gets a little ridiculous, and you guys do it so often. You. You guys.”

Apparently, they weren’t listening.

We graded their critical essays this week, and over half of them committed the offense. To shame them, I started plucking sentences out and retyping them, meaning to point furiously at them later. That did end up happening, of course, but when I stepped back, I noticed that they’d incidentally made a rather beautiful second-person found poem.

In it, I as a reader am capable of infinite travel to glorious lands. In it, there’s a lot I don’t know.

Sometimes you teach them, and sometimes they teach you.





If you step into it, close the door and walk to the very back, you will find yourself in a land that is more beautiful than our own.

You can go anywhere in time and space except Narnia.

There is a reason for you to realize.

You get your power to talk taken away if you do bad things.

You usually think of the characters that are in most of the books.

Speculative fiction should make you wonder life, give deeper meanings to the hard shell you see on the outside, and teach you to look at life a little differently.

What was it that made you decide?

Although books may seem to be about magical lands, they can teach you something that may have never crossed your mind.

So you know all of these things, right?

But there are so many more that you don’t.



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