You are not my friend – an antonymous poem

You are not my friend
(Based on “I am your friend” by Lorine Niedecker)

I am your enemy–
I send you raw flesh
and the desert locust.

          I abandon

your freedom
desiccate your goldfish
rip through your gloves
in a destroying mess

          displace everything

including your foot

© Martin Porter 2014

When is a poem that has not existed before not an original poem? “You are not my friend” has evolved from a poem by Lorine Niedecker, but where salient words are replaced with their antonyms, or variants that are similar to the antonym. The lack of a strict rule offers some opportunities for original thinking, but, nevertheless, the framework of the poem is not original. The meaning of the poem also has an origin that is not unique to the poem, but inevitably has the essence of the foundation piece.

Can it be said that this is a genuine poem at all? It has a poem’s structure, but has more than the whiff of artificial manufacture. Is this just an exercise that creates a “frankensteinian monster”? Or is it a fishing expedition to generate ideas which may be used to create a poem?

Whatever it is “You are not my friend” has an alarming appearance of meaning.

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