“Tornado Watch”

“Tornado Watch” by Connor Fisher was created from Gertrude Stein’s Tender Buttons (1914). To read the poem, please click here.

About the poem and the process of composing it, Connor writes:

This poem is the result of multiple layers of erasure, cut-and-paste, and rewrites of passages from Gertrude Stein’s Tender Buttons. Initially, I went through Stein’s individual prose poems, blacked out long phrases, and lineated the sections to create erasure poems. These were, frankly, mediocre; they were clearly still in Stein’s language and did not stand well on their own. I performed further erasures, recombined lines and fragments from nonconsecutive prose poems, and generally stripped away language to create minimalist word bundles that were not as indebted to Stein. Finally, I looked for similarities and topical resonances between the bundles, and recombined them to form poems, culminating in pieces like “Tornado Watch.”