Friday, August 29, 2008

Poetry Friday: Lost Poems

Well, this is cool. The Library of Congress has put out a web guide to finding lost poems.

While some of the first suggestions are obvious (Google!) and likely to provide instant results, I had fun reading down to the more specialized tactics, such as posting to message boards like Poetry Archives: Lost Poetry Quotations. And I can't wait to see what the British-staffed The Poetry Library has to offer---impeccable service, I hope.

Also, there's a section at the bottom of the web guide as to what to do if you've lost track of a poem submitted and published to a contest anthology. Apparently, contest poems are archived with the International Library of Poetry, and the Library of Congress is tired---wretched weary, if truth be told----of being confused with it.

Don't miss the lost novels section either. Children's literature is specifically addressed.

But back to poetry. I was going to post one of my favorite poems, One Art by Elizabeth Bishop, but I see that our PF hostess today posted about it last month. (What fascinates me about that poem is that it devastates me each time I read it. I know it, I know it, I know it. And yet I read it, again.)

So today, I'm pointing you to Liz's post about lost things instead.

And asking you: have you ever lost a poem? I did once.

Poetry Friday
is hosted by Charlotte's Library.


  1. Fascinating! You've gotta love the Library of Congress.

    I think my early poems are all better off lost. :-)

    I love that one by Elizabeth Bishop, too.

  2. What a great lost poems site! Thanks for the link!

  3. Sara,

    Thanks for the link to Bishop's poem. I love it. It's great having all these wonderful poems online, isn't it?

  4. Karen E: me too. The closest I've come is finding an old article I wrote for a local paper while I was in high school. "Wow, who wrote this? It's clunky," I thought, before I saw the by-line...

    Stories are different; I find lost bits all the time, nestled in between the pages of notebooks, in pockets of old backpacks, etc.

  5. Oh, Sara. I love the way you write.
    I think we should all take a teeny bit of your post and turn it in to our own poem. I want to write one, for example, called Wretched Weary of Being Confused.

  6. Thanks for the LOC link! It's stashed safely in my bookmark folder...where I'l promptly (probably) LOSE it!!!

  7. Thanks to Google and other such tools, I've managed to track down quite a few poems I'd lost -- poems that I had read and loved once, but could only recall random lines and stanzas here and there. This is a great toolbox LOC's assembled here, and I'll look forward to using it to hunt down the rest.

  8. Cool! Now if there the LOC would keep track of all my unpublished poems, that would be nifty!


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