amongst books

amongst books

Friday, April 04, 2014

Oulipost # 4: Fibonacci (variation)

Dallaire says Conservatives vets of the
are Canada’s with the the are said

As As they like say
the your is actually him, public.
conspiracy headed that the

Former Former Guelph
Conservative worker
has the in place,
information Elections
Prescott out in May

For For For almost we asked as

Brewster, Murray. The Canadian Press. "Dallaire says Conservatives abandoning vets." The Ottawa Citizen. 4 April 2014: A3.

Blatchford, Christie. Post Media News. "Ford did nothing wrong. At least nothing that he can be charged with." Ibid. A1.

McGregor, Glen & Maher, Stephen. "Witness provides ‘Pierre Poutine’ evidence." Ibid. A1.

Cobb, Chris. "Eric Leighton Inquest Wraps Up." Ibid. A1

PROMPT: Fibonacci (variation)

In a Fibonacci sequence, each term is the sum of the two terms immediately preceding it; typically with 1 as the first term: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5,8, 13, 21, 34, 55 and so on.
Select an article from your newspaper and create a poem using the words that correspond with the numbers in the sequence. Your poem will take the form of first word, first word, second word, third word, fifth word, eighth word, thirteenth word, etc. You can continue until you’ve run out of words in your article or until you’re happy with the poem’s conclusion.


The output of this exercise with only one article didn't feel meaty enough for me, so I decided to keep going & write a sequence of Fibonacci sequences. There's something fun about the repeated function words or proper names. I can imagine the whole thing being read aloud with multiple voices, kind of like one of those kids songs that are repeated in the round: Row, row, row, your boat…


The Fibonacci sequence is used in all kinds of disciplines, including botany & genetics. It's used to explain (for want of a better word) the spiral arrangement of petals. This makes me think of language spiraling outward & back in, the echo chamber of the nautilus shell, the act of articulation of sounds: implosives & explosives, repeating, resonating, funneling. The act of close listening & the way we are plunged into a miasma of sound, of language, of propaganda. To me this exercise feels like a form of deconstruction of the propaganda we are being fed by the powers that be. When you rearrange & isolate specific words, what is the outcome? Some things are emphasized that you may not have noticed before. What about articles about tragedy? How tragedy spirals into absurdity. Why are we here?


Anonymous said...

Lots of good work here, Amanda! "the your is actually him, public" is a great line.

Anonymous said...

Love the sequence sequence idea, and your remarkable ability to do these so quickly and early every morning. Brava, Amanda~

REINHARDT! said...

I thought the same thing! A sequence of sequences was far too perfect an opportunity to pass up. Awesome poems, Amanda!

kenyarockfilmfestivaljournal said...

a sequence of Fibonacci sequences. How clever! I like the end result :-)

Elizabeth said...

I also enjoy the deconstructive -- dare I say subversive? -- nature of the Oulipo prompts.

Amanda Earl said...

thanks, all