Thursday, February 19, 2009

Anatomy/List/Catalog--- category?

I really like the idea of list poems, but I actually enjoy the idea of sterile lists, lists that aren't poems, placed in the context of a poem. So I'm posting one of Wikipedia's "Category" pages that provide a list of links in a certain category. I do so because they have some really strange categories, some that have always appealed to me in a poetic sense. Maybe I will do something based on one of these lists, but I thought it might appeal to someone else for inspiration too. I hope this doesn't seem like a cop out, I'm honestly interested in the poetic purity of a real list, how a list can come across as something poignant and important when it is only trying to convey a sense of organization or information. For instance, find the "Category: Death" page on Wikipedia and what you can find is any link, any person or thing, that is associated with death. I think it would be easy and interesting to do something with this category, for instance:

Category: "Nonexistent people"
* Abraham ben Abraham
* John Adam (hoax)
* David Agnew
* P. D. Q. Bach
* Badge man
* Abu Abdullah al-Rashid al-Baghdadi
* Henryk Batuta hoax
* Belsnickel
* Ernst Bettler
* Franz Bibfeldt
* Joe Bloggs
* Bogeyman
* Nicolas Bourbaki
* Harry Q. Bovik
* Ponsonby Britt
* Stefan Brockhoff
* Paul Bunyan
* George P. Burdell
* Eddie Burrup
* Josiah S. Carberry
* Andrew Carlssin
* Jára Cimrman
* Tony Clifton
* Allegra Coleman
* Cumma
* Paul DeFanti
* Lucian Yahoo Dragoman
* Martin Eisenstadt
* Sidd Finch
* J. Fortescue
* Cherubina de Gabriak
* José Gaspar
* Nahum Gergel
* Godescealc
* Miranda Grosvenor
* Kasongo Ilunga
* Naomi V. Jelish
* Pope Joan
* Pope John XX
* Anthony Godby Johnson
* Andreas Karavis
* Kaycee Nicole
* Kazuo Uzuki
* Kodee Kennings
* John Ketcham (The Amityville Horror)
* Wanda Koolmatrie
* JT LeRoy
* Lustfaust
* Gruban Malić
* Ern Malley
* David Manning (fictitious writer)
* Operation Mincemeat
* Masal Bugduv
* Alleged Ouze Merham interview of Ariel Sharon
* Jakob Maria Mierscheid
* Lillian Virginia Mountweazel
* Nguyen Toon
* Ronald Opus
* Walter Plinge
* Praxedes
* Prester John
* John Q. Public
* Publius Lentulus
* Pudentiana
* Rabbi Emmanuel Rabinovich
* Lucy Ramirez
* Ivan Renko
* Joe Shmoe
* N. Senada
* John Smith (name)
* Alan Smithee
* H. Rochester Sneath
* George Spelvin
* Ron Stablehorn
* Wanda Tinasky
* Izumi Todo
* Taro Tsujimoto
* Udo of Aachen
* Ugly Casanova
* Vaclav Drda
* John Charles Walters Company
* Bernard Weiss
* Wilgefortis
* Araki Yasusada
* Hajime Yatate
* Piotr Zak

Just so it doesn't seem like I can't find a list poem, I will post something I think is a legitimate list poem, one by Sylvia Plath using a catalog of metaphors to describe her gravid state:

Metaphors by Sylvia Plath

I'm a riddle in nine syllables,
An elephant, a ponderous house,
A melon strolling on two tendrils.
O red fruit, ivory, fine timbers!
This loaf's big with its yeasty rising.
Money's new-minted in this fat purse.
I'm a means, a stage, a cow in calf.
I've eaten a bag of green apples,
Boarded the train there's no getting off.

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