Book spine poem: Walking Word by Word

April 19, 2018

Ninety years ago today, the first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary – 414,825 words defined in 15,487 pages over 12 volumes – was completed. Invited by its editors to mark the anniversary, I’ve made a new book spine poem, dedicated to the OED and to James Murray:

[click to enlarge]

Photo of a stack of seven books, their spines facing front, and arranged to make a found poem, as presented in text below


Walking Word by Word

Caught in the web of words,
The loom of language,
The stuff of thought,
The story of writing ­­–
a line made by
walking word by
word through the
language glass.


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The web of words

October 19, 2010
[click to enlarge]


The web of words

Caught in the web of words –
The elements of editing,
The grammar of living –
I may be some time.


I almost included this title at line 2, but I felt it would be too harsh.

This is the eighth ‘bookmash’ I’ve posted. Numbers 1–7 are here.

Thanks to the authors: K. M. Elisabeth Murray, Arthur Plotnik, David Cooper, and Francis Spufford. Artist Nina Katchadourian’s Sorted Books project was my original inspiration.