Poet and cartoonist Austin Kleon has discovered a new way to read between the lines. Armed with a daily newspaper and a permanent marker, he constructs through deconstruction — eliminating the words he doesn't need to create a new art form: Newspaper Blackout poetry.
Highly original, Kleon's verse ranges from provocative to lighthearted, and from moving to hysterically funny, and undoubtedly entertaining. The latest creations in a long history of "found art," Newspaper Blackout will challenge you to find new meaning in the familiar and inspiration from the mundane.
Newspaper Blackout contains original poems by Austin Kleon, as well as submissions from readers of Kleon's popular online blog and a handy appendix on how to create your own blackout poetry.
"The poems are exquisite. Some are funny, some are ironic, some are moving, some are deep....poetry about love, children, teenagers, relationships, drummers, Cleveland, and the universe....This is a thought-provoking, fun, and inspirational book that will bring out the poet in you, if you'll only let it."
"The technique of 'finding' a hidden text within a text is not new, as Austin will tell you, but his approach is. He has liberated it from the left-field manifestos and postmodern posturing which have usually accompanied it. These poems are sweet, poignant, evocative, and funny."
— Drew Dernavich
"...pieces that work exceptionally well both as poetry and works of art....one of the year's most striking (and often surprising) books."
— David Gutowski, largeheartedboy.com
“Part ‘writing with constrictions,’ part happy accident, part found art, part design challenge...the collection...gives a well rounded and consistent view into a guy most of us would want to buy a beer.”
— Radio Exile
One can imagine taking up blackout poetry on their daily bus commute in place of sudoku or the crossword puzzle.
— Toronto's National Post
Instead of starting with a blank page, poet Austin Kleon grabs the New York Times and a permanent marker and eliminates the words he doesn’t need.
— NPR's Morning Edition
Sort of like Michelangelo carving away the marble that imprisoned what he saw within.
— Cleveland Plain Dealer
“[A] sense of play infuses the poems—short pieces that touch on first sex and outer space, in a voice that slips from funny to elegiac…”
— Austin Chronicle
“Some of the results are hilarious, some are profound and even unsettling, but they are never bland or boring.”
— The Ephemerist
“Highbrow/brilliant…It’s better than it sounds.”
— New York magazine
“…hidden bits of Zen lite that occasionally bump up against brilliance….Kleon manages to turn the paper of record into visually stark nuggets of poetry and wit. All the Muse That’s Fit to Print, you might say.”
— Texas Monthly
“…a kind of Rorschach approach to reading newspapers…”
— Wall Street Journal
“[The poems] resurrect the newspaper when everyone else is declaring it dead…like a cross between magnetic refrigerator poetry and enigmatic ransom notes, funny and zen-like, collages of found art…”
— The New Yorker