Poetry As Tribute: Erasing David Foster Wallace's 'Infinite Jest'

August 6, 2014 12:13 PM

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Poetry As Tribute: Erasing David Foster Wallace's 'Infinite Jest'

All lives end eventually, whether at the hands of time or illness, intention or accident. What's left in their stead, however, is never a complete absence. Family, friends and colleagues weave new stories from memories and mementos -- stories that say not just who the departed were, but who they were to those who knew them, stories that hold in spite of the gaps.

This appropriation plays out literally in the act of erasure poetry -- the art of marking out words and phrases from an existing text, leaving behind select words that compose a new poem. Poets start with the stories others have left behind, poring over their turns of phrase, character structure and...

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