Oulipost #3 – Definitional Lit

Select a single sentence from a newspaper article. Replace each meaningful word in the text (verb, noun, adjective, adverb) by its dictionary definition. Repeat this treatment on the resulting sentence, and so on, until you’ve had enough! Note that after only two such treatments with a relatively compact dictionary, even a two-word sentence can produce an accumulation of 57 words.

Merely to Cause

I, merely (to cause,
to cause) to become
very upset, extremely
agitated, I, no longer possessed,

I, no longer retained –
I, to negate the word check, or curb,

the cause of intending, used

as a function of the word
indicated purpose, intention,
(to cause, to cause) to become

upset, merely possessed.

Source: Disis, Jill, Indianapolis Star, April 3, 2014


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