How to Woo Your Wife—Flarf

Tell her that your first woman

Was hand carved from the heart wood

Of an old oak that fell behind your house

During a thunderstorm one lonely night.


Tell her about

A wood and wire fence,

Wood and an upholstered bed,

Wood and hearts,

Wood and erectile dysfunction.


Use a lovely old-fashioned phrase

All about a woman

In which the grain has grown

In a deformed manner.


Tell her a story about

Chris Wood and his wife,

Wood Harris and his wife,

And Levison Wood and his wife.


Tell her that is like Pinocchio,

And you think it will grow a little

Every time you tell her a lie.


FLARF is a wild style of poetry that started as a joke. People noticed that no matter how bad your poems were would tell you that you had won their poetry prize. Then, they would try to scam you out of your money. So devious poets started sending the crappiest poetry they could write to Even that would win the poetry prize. These poets began sending each other their crappy poems, and eventually it became a legitimate poetry style. If you want to read more about the FLARF or any of the other poetry terms, check out the glossary of poetic terms from the Poetry Foundation at:

Google painting is a type of collaging that primarily uses internet search results and Google’s search prediction capabilities to generate quasi-random phrases. The technique helps jumpstart creativity with strange juxtapositions, broken syntax, and internet speak.

September Poem 49: The Red Field Guide

Dressing your kill on your knees. The last leaf

Falls. The story ends. Your wood shed. A roofed

Pile that you built. Old pallets, scrap wood,

And an angled flat roof you covered in

Left over scraps of tile. Your cabin.

Warm from your seasoned wood. It had been her

Present to you. Or your present to you.

Your dream. Your refuge from her. From never

Ending shitfits. Angry that you cooked your

Own meals. Angry that you invited her

To eat. Angry. And why? Because of your

Mannerisms. Because her father did

Something. Once, before you knew her. Something

Like nothing you had done. Blame without end.