A Poem Ode, A Poem Urned

Time to catch up. As some of you may remember from last year, I’m partial to erasures, wherein one takes a previously published poem, chooses words and phrases from it (following the poem linearly), and creates a new piece of literature from the fragments. It’s more challenging than it sounds at first, if you’re picky about the flow of grammar, but still it’s a fun and creative exercise (not unlike NaPo’s Dickinson challenge of Day 5).

This time, however, I decided to piece together two new and entirely different poems from the same originator, John Keats’ famous Ode on a Grecian Urn. In the following scan, you can read the original text, and find my own creation in the circled words (polished, separate versions to follow). So poems Fifteen and Sixteen:

urn erasure15:

Unravished silence haunts
maidens and melodies
but the sensual spirit
beneath love
and warm breathing
leaves a burning tongue.

The mysterious
silken citadel
will tease us
in midst of Beauty
on earth.



Thou bride of time,
who canst shape
of men or maidens
melodies unheard,
pipe not thy song,
nor fade the Spring

For a heart
and a parching tongue
are coming
to the altar.

Lead’st thou
thy silent soul
and silent form
out of cold woe–
to truth,
and all ye know.


A bit of tame eroticism for #15, and what developed into a meditation on writer’s block or lacking inspiration for #16.


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