The Found Poetry Collaboration #1, featuring: Lydia Allison, Kate Garrett, James Gidding, Joanna Lee

10 Mar


The Found Poetry Collaboration 2014

For the next 8 weeks poets Lydia Allison, Kate Garrett, James Giddings and Joanna Lee will be writing 1 piece of found poetry per fortnight:

A found poem is created when words in an existing piece of writing are lifted from that writing and rearranged to create a greater emotional response. A found poem is shaped from a collection of words or phrases found in one text or a selection of texts to shape an entirely new poem.  

The poets are free to use any texts they like, and I throw in one found text of my choice per fortnight just to mix it up a bit. For the Week 1 poem I chose a section of text from W.G. Sebald’s The Ring’s Of Saturn (you’ll find the section at the bottom of the post, should you wish to read it). 



by Lydia Allison


walls hung with copper masks,
hand-coloured and perhaps untouched

………….wear it: bankers, investors,
……………………people who believe in symbolism 

………….plaster blotches moth-eaten
………….a ghost bowed by sorrows

colourless, pink, blue,
………….green, champagne,

there are moments, through rooms
sure of the shores or the heart

…………..the symbolism is clear:
there is only one

…………..the dark continent.
…………..say which decade for ages co-exist


note: I have used The Rings of Saturn text, along with texts from three sites about wedding ring stone meanings. Here are the links:


On Tea & Sympathy

by Kate Garrett


The walls are hung
with rich violet hues.
The Queen of Tulips
fills copper kettles:
green tea, freshly
brewed by an artist,
calms your senses.

The exquisite flowers,
mottled with scarlet
& purple blotches
lift your spirits
into a realm hand-
coloured by Modernism –

a country house
for healing,
some kind of no-man’s-land,
luscious, depending
on which blossoms
the bees have buzzed.

The yellowish air
filling the dark night
brings your fantasies alive –
the Emblem of Love,
a ghost bowed by sorrows,
enveloping you, helps
the ages co-exist.


*Written using only words from the text provided (extract from The Rings of Saturn by W.G. Sebald) and various scent descriptions on twelve boxes of Tulasi incense sticks (see photo).


incense found poetry

The Rings

by James Giddings


After what feels like two thousand years
in the heart of the dark continent, I find you
under the shores of the Arctic Ocean. 
I dig
and dig until the mottled, moth-eaten fur
of your stuffed polar bear springs up in its red felt
African mask; the coloured faces of artist’s portraits
yellowish with bedpan-relief. You must have passed
through the rooms to heaven, or to a country house
in Suffolk. You ask me to stay and no one can say
which decade or century it is; I know this is the afterlife
your body, half a wedding-suit, lost in the shadows.


*Found poem. Created from bits of the following:
The Rings of Saturn by W.G. Sebald
Salmon by Pascale Petit
The Second Husband by Pascale Petit

notes on cardiac physiology

by Joanna Lee


hung with bedpans and hussars’ sabres the human heart
has a discriminative touch.

mottled scarlet, it routes a solitary pathway
across continents, Oceans, losses.

the profound shores of forehead, scalp tongue
are excitatory ghosts bowed by sorrows,

safari trophies that include the entire body
of its dark.

The stuffed polar bear at its entrance stands yards tall.

it receives different blood by moment, tastes
red of serotonin, is spared no-man’s-land

by the lacrimal tearing of vessels.
it is intractable. it is artist. it is acute,

an arctic gag reflex with a visceral
trajectory but no position sense.

known to be a major circuit,
its fibers course through copper battles,

and may produce pain.


*Found from:

 Neuroanatomy: An Atlas of Structures, Sections, and Systems, Fifth Edition, Sections 7-3 to 7-8: Sensory Pathways. by Duane E. Haines and The Rings of Saturn by W.G. Sebald.


 To find out more about Lydia, Kate, James and Joanna please visit:


Lydia Allison:

Kate Garrett:

James Giddings:

Joanna Lee:


Lydia, Kate, James and Joanna will be back on Monday 24th March with some more great found poetry. I’ve sent them their text just a moment ago. Tomorrow, you’ll find Millfield School’s first FreeSpace with a range of Short story openings from their pupils. Thank you for your interest. 


*If you want to see the piece of text I sent the foundlings. Here it is:

The walls are hung with copper kettles, bedpans, hussars’ sabres. African masks, spears, safari trophies, hand-coloured engravings of Boer War battles- Battles of Pieters Hill and Relief of Ladysmith; A Bird’s Eye View from an Observation Balloon-and a number of family portraits painted perhaps some time between 1920 and 1960 by an artist not untouched by Modernism, the plaster coloured faces of the sitters mottled with scarlet and purple blotches. The stuffed polar bear in the entrance hall stands yards tall. With its yellowish and moth-eaten fur, it resembles a ghost bowed by sorrows. There are indeed moments, as one passes through the rooms open to the public at Somerlyton, when one is not quite sure whether one is in a country house in Suffolk or some kind of no-man’s-land, on the shores of the Arctic Ocean or in the heart of the dark continent. Nor can one readily say which decade or century it is, for many ages are superimposed here and co-exist. (35-36)

4 Responses to “The Found Poetry Collaboration #1, featuring: Lydia Allison, Kate Garrett, James Gidding, Joanna Lee”

  1. Lydia Allison March 10, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

    Reblogged this on Lydia Allison.

  2. joanna March 10, 2014 at 6:34 pm #

    Reblogged this on the tenth muse.

  3. Ekemini INKCRAFTs March 16, 2014 at 4:16 pm #

    Lovely. First time i have stumbled on ‘found’ poetry. Great.

    • ArtiPeeps March 17, 2014 at 11:54 am #

      Thanks for your comment and interest. I have to admit I hadn’t heard of it either until recently. But I was so struck by the possibility within it, I couldn’t help but start up a collaboration on it. I’m going to make it a regular in our seasons of work!

      All good wishes,

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