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It’s all

been in


hanging over

gone to

gotten into

and off the top 

of this head

above heels

above water

in the gutter

in the clouds

in the sand

that’s been

talked off

laughed off

bitten off

snapped off

held up

and hung low.

It’s been

an ache 

and a trip

but I’m sorry 

I lost it.


This poem is constructed with strings of idioms – figures of speech that are interesting for both their literal and figurative interpretations. Idioms are great examples of how we make sense of our experience with language and the imagination. To experience the poem, with all its actions, is to mentally leap through the phrases – mind-springing with stimulation. The act of reading the poem reveals the ways we navigate our minds. The poetry is run-on sentences that are rhythmic and structured. To comprehend and reveal the poem’s structure, it is mapped out in an academic sentence diagram. The poem is presented in diagram format with the words systematically mapped: subject / verb / preposition / object / article / adjective/ adverb. As a counter to the rigorous structure of the diagram format, this poem is also physically expressed without words as an oil pastel interpretation of the poem on the papyrus paper.

HeadBarbara Campbell
00:00 / 00:28
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