Future Hypertext

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008


The above shot illustrates a problem I’ve encountered with the poem I’ve tentatively entitled “Future.” The origin is “I wrote.” The context has to do with “a note” that appears elsewhere in the poem as something that returns and that has more significance to the future than at the time it was written.

The link problem has to do with the destination space, which has less to do with “lexia” as it does with syntax. “I wrote” has too little to do with the relationship between coyotes and “her” and the context of those dictive elements. They’re too important to be linked to a weak, or arbitrary link.

This is a rich creative process (and rich with pitfalls). In poetry, “by the” is an important question. It’s made more significant when link structure is part of the chemical reaction.

Bottom line: “I wrote” . . . “Where the coyotes / follow . . . ” is not the truth; nor is the alternative reading “I wrote” . . . “this” . . . Although this latter issue seems to open up opportunity for resolution.

5 responses to “Future Hypertext”

  1. susan says:

    It would seem then that the freedom of exploratory poetry has shed the verse constraints but shackled itself with certain requirements of the hypertext form–something I argued against at Hypertext 08. “Story seeks its form” to me meant that the words should beg for the link rather than be adjusted to suit.

    On the other hand, making a hypertext piece allows the additional creativity of maneuvering words and thoughts into an elaborate structure that could challenge and please the artist as much as the reader.

  2. Steve says:

    It’s interesting that the link relations become an additional poetic element. I guess the question might be: how are links different in poetry than in fiction, much line break and syntactical rearrangement.

  3. B says:

    The only connection I see is the physical author. In appreciation of literature, the audience takes a chance with the reading of the piece and follows the author’s voice no matter where that goes. Thus, the author desires to provoke the audience to understand the Midwest and the purpose of the venture that is the hypertext. This experience is at the heart of interaction and new media. Keep up the good work.

  4. Can you try to make just part of the word into a link, or maybe even just the space after the word? That can signal a more tenative connection.

  5. Steve says:


    The solution actually has to do with, I believe, stepping back and looking at the poem as a whole, at least from the writer’s perspective. Each part is a complete poem on its own and the links create relations that build, much as a part of a painting zooms out to form an elephant.

    Here’s what I have. Eliminate “Where” and all kinds of possibilities open up.