How Many Words Is a Videopoem Worth?

(Get it? Wordsworth?)

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then videos, at a minimum of 24 frames per second, should easily assume valuations rising to millions of words. And yet poetry is an art form typically marked by an extremely economical distribution of the laureate Sarah Palin called “verbiage.”

The poet Richard Fox has released a “videopoem,” called “Europe,” from Hula, his CD of sound poetry. (See above.) I have to admit that videopoems haven’t been on my radar but, hey, it’s a wild and woolly world and Booklisters can’t be everywhere at once. What do you think? Does the video enhance the poem? Overpower it? Provide a useful way to get poetry in front of potential readers that, given the ubiquity of smartphones, are most often viewers?

Full disclosure: I’m acquainted with Fox and think he’s a great guy—but that doesn’t make me any less curious about your answers.

 

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About the Author:

Keir Graff is Executive Editor of Booklist Publications and the author of five books. His most recent is the middle-grade novel, The Other Felix (2011). Follow him on Twitter at @Booklist_Keir.

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