Page from Ulysses for Erasure PoetryPage from Ulysses by James Joyce

On the brink by Tracey Dawson

-Tracy Dawson


No fear, courting death
Hovering shadows and shades
Silver threads stretched about
Hovering here with honeycombed ground
Oblong cells, flowers of sleep
New life quick in the damp earth
A kind of tallowy swirling
De mortuis nil nisi prius
The mourners split, stepping on the brink

-Doug Chinnery

Ballsbridge threads.
Stretched shadows yawn
Descendant might love
Kneeling might produce
The Botanic Gardens.
A bargain! Fat
Treacle cells cracking,
Dead laugh hard,
Wind barrow split.
Gravediggers nose round.

-Elizabeth Moura

Abridgements (a black out poem with help from James Joyce)

All want to be on good terms with
Habeas corpus
I took to cover when she disturbed me
And temper getting cross
He had the gumption to
Dangle that before her. It might thrill her at first
Shadows of the tombs
A big giant in the dark
Gas of graves

The clock was on
A young widow
In the midst of death
Vitals desire
The window.

A fair share go under in
Come up some day above ground in a landslip
To be flowers
New life
With thanks.

The soil
Green and pink
Go on living
To feed

A devil
Must be
Swirling with them.
Your head
Gives him a sense of power
He looks at
The cockles of his heart

This morning
The dead
Would like to hear
The women
The human heart
Daren’t joke
His funeral.

They say you live longer
For tomorrow
The papers
Ceased to

An Old Actor’s Lament

Bloom, grey spouting beard! Thrill her!

Here, the same women still kiss young Romeo,
pleasure tantalising, gnawing, desire growing.

Over there, every man – well preserved –
would of course live forever.

Those pretty little ladies – hot, strong, and sweet –
laugh; joke about your life.

How many have you asked? Two, ten, eleven?
The papers ceased to care.

-Tim Fellows

Page from Ulysses for Erasure Poetry

Mark Grainger's Erasure poem

-Mark Grainger

Mark Grainger 2

-Mark Grainger’s second erasure from the same page


The caretaker’s fear
after the funeral.
Churchyards yawn
and say Romeo –
tantalising, gnawing
desire all honeycombed.

Giant poppies killed
the Christian boy,
cheerful Peter, strong
and sweet. Hard to read
your own obituary.

-Georgia Hilton

the dead

the tombs yawn and sleep
pitchdark Romeo tantalising the starving

a fair field, honeycombed
and neat

flowers of sleep
gardens blood-fruit

rot black
feed a devil

cheerful, cracking cockles
the men hear
juicy, hot, sweet

put the papers
in the graves

-Sarah Connor

Bios And Links

-Tracy Dawson

is an active member of Read to Write (Balby and Mexborough) and Lippy Women. Her poems have been published in anthologies by Maytree Press and Ripon Poetry Festival.

Erasure poetry challenge. Ever wanted to do an erasure poem? Copy the page from James Joyce’s “Ulysses” below. Next go through the page marking the words that leap out at you. Either strikethrough the words not used or pick out the words you wish to use and DM me the poem. ONLY USE THE WORDS ON THE PAGE FROM ULYSSES. DO NOT USE WORDS THAT ARE NOT ON THIS PAGE.

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