My mother and I were on a bit of an artistic kick today. We wanted to create something, but felt we didn’t have the tools or the skill to put together something with as much value as, say, sculpture or pottery. I considered knitting or crocheting but that would have excluded my mother. We thought about painting, but had no paint. We thought about drawing, but had no inspiration. We finally settled on digging some construction paper and glue sticks out of the bottom of my closet, and with the help of some of my mother’s old fashion magazines we created found poems.
At their most basic, found poems are created by taking words from pre-existing sources and fitting them together to say what you want. While my mother and I used old fashion magazines, to cut out and paste words, phrases, or images onto construction paper, found poems can be just as easily created by flipping to random pages in books and pulling out words to write on the page.
Although I cannot recreate the fonts, the colors or the backgrounds for the words I used, here’s the found poem I created as close to its original format as I can do.
Yourself healthy, radiant
You don’t need Escape Plans
Do what you love.
Never forget yourself.
At least 90% of these words came from fashion magazines. As controversial as the fashion industry is in feminist circles, they use words that can be empowering if reclaimed. If you get a moment and are feeling creative, know there are inspiring messages anywhere. Create. See what catches your eye and piece it together in ways unique to you. Reclaim the words of the media and express your ideas for no other purpose than to make yourself feel good.