March 30th, 2012 / 5:08 pm
Contests & Random

at halfway point 14

So I was fudging juggling judging a poetry contest yesterday


Stumbled upon many Centered Poems. Why do I retch them so? Where

Did they come from? Origins? Why am I biased since one

Was about a glass basketball and I like that general idea

And this was for cash $$$ (Wait, I thought poetry

Couldn’t make money.)

Sorry. They seem like cover letters on purple paper to me. Or I

mean like people who ask about copyright. Who knows?

Who writes Centered Poems?

I am drinking beer now so wanted to

Bring this question in front of the quart

Of public opinion. When you see a

Centered Poem, what do you think?

Is it arbitrary for me to hate them?

I don’t know.

(moon, gossamer, wings, love, tendrils)

What u think?

Tags: ,


  1. Joyce Jenkins


  2. Joyce Jenkins

      Teaches me to log in with the wrong account. Anyway I wrote a centered poem, it was a happy accident that kept since it is more of a concrete effect than anything else. 

  3. Steven Pine

      apologies to joyce, I fail at the internet today.

  4. Ethan

      i agree
      centered text
      looks totally

  5. Frank Tas, the Raptor

      Reminds me of Hallmark cards.

  6. mimi

      because some people give in to romantic centermentality?

  7. Trey

      hehe. nice.

  8. deadgod

      I think it’s a lot more “arbitrary” than not liking a poem for being (in one’s view) poorly worded or rhythmed.  It’s less “arbitrary” than not liking a poem for being in some particular language.

      Maybe you were increasingly repelled by the configuration?  –and only one poem shaped so out of 20 [50?] would have appeared to be, if not charming or clever, at least manageably charmless in its format?

  9. Adam Robinson

      AWW I think they are okay. I guess they can seem MORE bounded by the “page” than other justifications because, mechanically, they indicate the edges of the page — whereas with say a ragged left justification the right side of the page can be not say 4″ away from the right of the last letter of the line, but could even be like 400 MILES away for all you know. The left side could just be an inch away, who knows? But with center justifying a poem you know that BOTH sides are the SAME DISTANCE from the side of the page no matter how big or internetty it is, and what are you supposed to make of THAT? What is the poem DOING in the MIDDLE? Is it because omg the poet didn’t consider what the lines should be like, like where they should break and ENJAMB? And why do sometimes the first letters get capitalized and sometimes they don’t!? What the fuck is up with THE TREES THE TREES, those Heather Christle poems, in their BOXES? Are we doing something wrong? Why can’t I crush rose petals into the computer screen? AND how do they do SKYWRITING? One time in NYC I saw a plane trying to write words in the sky, and everyone was at Lincoln Center, necks craned back, trying to figure out what it was going to say, 10,000 passerunders maybe, wondering is it a marriage proposal? Promo for the film festival? A Nike commercial? But then the word was just — well I don’t remember what it was — it didn’t make sense — and then the plane flew away. Twitter exploded with WTF? Maybe the plane ran out of whatever it is that makes the FOG, but all it left was FOGGY NOTIONS, but you know what? I HATED IT because it was right there in the MIDDLE OF THE SKY and I didn’t know what it was.

  10. Barbara Varanka

      As long as you capitalize every line and change the typeface to Comic Sans.