Wednesday, April 5, 2017


Geof Huth, "slayte" (5 April 2017)

A pwoermd faces us.

No piece of poetry is merely of language. It is also cultural. Myriad cultural significances inhabit even the smallest poem, even the pwoermd.

Take, for instance, today's object pwoermd of mine. It written on, and also of, a stone I found somewhere. I no longer recall where. It had a certain shape and look. A rounded top. Straight sides. A smooth greyness but with parts of its face having flaked off.

It resembles an old, distressed headstone from the 1600s in New York. So the word I thought to write on it was "slayte," referring both to the look of the stone (its essential slatiness) and the cultural references of that stone (death, and the memorializing of same).

This is a small poem, unambitious, not trying for much. All it does is bring attention to itself and its makeup: the language it uses and the surface it sits upon. It causes us to pause for a second, to understand.

The pwoermd faces us.

We face back.


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