What does it mean to be 'found'? The hymn Amazing Grace says:


I once was lost, but now am found
Was blind, but now I see.


To 'find' something is a new way of seeing something.




We might always have our keys, but when we misplace them, we suddenly lose sight of them. Where are they? We search. And when we find them, the joy we feel upon discovering them again brings them back into focus. It sets down something in the mind as centre-stage, something that was once in the wings.




Suddenly, when we find something, they become our darling—no matter how momentarily—and the focal point of our imagination.




That is the joy of the found poem. The found poem picks something up that has been done before, and turns it into something that has not been done before. It takes up the old, the clichéd, the tired, the rehashed, the classic—and sets it down again as a new starting point.




The quaint, archaic writing of Chaucer ('Whan that Aprille, with hise shoures soote') suddenly gains an up-to-date quickness and immediacy of thought, blunt and urgent, at the hands of T.S. Eliot ('April is the cruelest month ...').




How do we 'find' poetry? It requires seeing again.




How do we see again? We must lose our words.




Bait the poetry that roams in the wild. Do not be a farmer. Be a hunter.




We must first lose in order to find. To lose words we must give up control. Control over what we write is the enemy of finding poetry, because it presupposes that the source of words is within us, and that we already have what we need. But when we step outside of what we know and look around us; that is when the finding begins.

                                                                                                            ~Ian Wong