amongst books

amongst books

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Oulipost # 29 Canada Dry

once upon a time it was the last big bang
once upon a time the sky turned black as the funnel cloud closed in
once upon a time it entered the red chamber
once upon a time among enemy lines
once upon a time at an auto-parts warehouse
once upon a time there were card tricks, sleights of hand
once upon a time the holy grail was no more than a fiction
once upon a time another country
once upon a time inside a community shelter
once upon a time given the brutality
once upon a time literally threw the book
once upon a time this was more than a farce
once upon a time will have to wait
once upon a time a wall of riot police
once upon a time it soaked up the pristine beauty in a lakefront hotel
once upon a time a common refrain
once upon a time an inner circle
once upon a time it killed its original proposals
once upon a time albeit with the caveat
once upon a time on condition of anonymity
once upon a time doesn’t play much baseball
once upon a time a crackdown
once upon a time a formal announcement
once upon a time the swaggering crowd
once upon a time you’re going to be replaced
once upon a time impregnated with bad optics
once upon a time a fresh eruption of abuse
once upon a time remained silent


The name of this procedure is taken from the soft drink marketed as “the champagne of ginger ales.” The drink may have bubbles, but it isn’t champagne. In the words of Paul Fournel, who coined the term, a Canada Dry text “has the taste and color of a restriction but does not follow a restriction.” (A musical example is Andrew Bird’s “Fake Palindromes.”)  Be creative, and write a poem sourced from your newspaper that sounds like it’s been Oulipo-ed, but hasn’t.


Press, Jordan. “Tory Senators still plan to leave early.” the Ottawa Citizen. 29 April 2014. A1.
Reevely, David. “Wynne pledges $2.5B for businesses. Ibid. A1.
Butler, Don. “The call of the Wi-Fi.” Ibid. A1.
Leslie, Keith. the Canadian Press. “Liberals used fake deficit figures: Progressive Conservatives.” Ibid. A2.
Kennedy, Mark. WITH FILES FROM THE CANADIAN PRESS. “Elections act deadline ‘farce’: NDP.” Ibid. A3.
THE CANADIAN PRESS. “Prentice to seek Alberta Tory helm. Ibid. A3.
Goodman, Lee-Ann. THE CANADIAN PRESS. “Foreign workers file bedevils Kenney.” Ibid. A4.
Fisher, Matthew. POSTMEDIA NEWS. “Ukrainian separatists split heads at rally.” Ibid. A6.
Salter Jim and Demillo, Andrew. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS. “‘Run! Run! It’s coming!’ And then all hell broke loose.” Ibid. A6.


I created a fairy tale from a variety of sources. I changed a few pronouns. I haven’t started drinking ginger ale yet but Canada Dry is my ginger ale of choice. Schweppes tastes like wet cardboard.

For my fellow Ouliposters takes visit the Found PoetryReview.


beth said...

What a lovely conclusion! I particularly like "once upon a time a common refrain." The effect of the repetition throughout really works. Thanks for participating, Amanda.

Amanda Earl said...

thanks, Beth. it was a fun exercise & the whole experience was fabulous. i feel its absence keenly.