A Memory of Swallows

This is called a Found Poem. The idea is to pick a piece of prose and pick a section. Within that section you pick out words and create a poem from them. The catch is that the words you pick must be used in the order they appear in the text.

This poem is a result from a passage that I used from: A Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce.


They flew round,
dark quivering bodies flying clearly,
against the sky;
a smoky blue.

A dark flash, a swerve, a dart aside, a curve,
a flutter of wings.
All darting bodies passed.

 Flying high
in straight curving lines,
left to right
circling a temple of air.

He listened to the cries:
the notes: long, shrill, whirring trilled.
Clear and fine.

 Inhuman clamour swerving round
soothed his eyes…
the image of his mother’s face.

 Good, evil and shapeless thoughts
of birds and their knowledge.
An ancient temple of unknown symbols
of the writers and the moon.

 God’s image: a judge in a wig.
Remembered like an Irish Oath.
It was Folly.
They came back, flying darkly
against the fading air.

 Birds, from the South:
ever going, coming, building
an unlasting home,
under the soft silent spaces of fading sky. 

The End

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