All terms

What is a Found Poem?

Poem composed of words and phrases found in another text.

The Art of Literary Recycling: Found Poem

Found poem is like a treasure hunt - you search for words and phrases hidden inside another text and use them to create a new work of art.

It's the ultimate form of literary recycling, breathing new life into discarded or forgotten lines and giving them a new context and meaning.

This technique can be used with any kind of text - from novels, newspaper articles, and instruction manuals to government reports and personal letters. The challenge is to find the right words and put them in the right order to create something that is beautiful, evocative, and original.

A Case of Found Poetry: Two Examples

A found poem is a clever way to transform ordinary text into an extraordinary work of art. Here are two examples from modern literature:

Death of a Naturalist - Seamus Heaney

Seamus Heaney used found poetry in his first collection, Death of a Naturalist, taking lines and phrases from various textbooks and articles to create new poems, such as 'Death of a Naturalist,' 'An Advancement of Learning,' and 'Blackberry-Picking,' which became instant classics in the canon of contemporary poetry.

The Waste Land - T. S. Eliot

The Waste Land is often considered to be one of the greatest poems of the 20th century, and it's also a found poem - T. S. Eliot drew inspiration and lines from a wide range of sources, including Shakespeare, Dante, and the Bible, to create a haunting and unforgettable masterpiece.