The Game Is Afoot!
An Introduction

These are process poems.

My goal is to use these 100-year-old words and create my poems with them. I do not wish to make Sherlock Holmes poems, or directly make kitschy Œgiant rat of Sumatra1 references to make the poem stand up. No my hope to make something quite new using something old and familiar. The text is gathered from online electronic versions at Project Gutenberg then scrambled through a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet. This scrambling is to best take the words out of their present context and open the field to the full potential of the words themselves. The worry is the potential in using Conan-Doyle's wonderful text clusters.

Sherlock Holmes is a fictional detective of the late 19th and early 20th centuries who made his first published appearance in 1887. Scottish author and physician Sir Arthur Conan Doyle created this famous fictional detective, and indeed one of the most recognizable of literary characters. Conan Doyle wrote four novels and fifty-six short stories featuring his creation. Holmes1 friend and biographer, Dr. John H. Watson, with the exception of two narrated by Holmes himself and two more written in the third person, narrated almost all. The stories first appeared in magazine serialization, notably in The Strand, over a period of forty years. This was a common form of publication at the time: Charles Dickens' works were issued in a similar fashion. The stories cover a period from around 1878 up to1903, with a final case in 1914.

Sherlock Holmes described himself as a "consulting detective", an expert who is brought into cases that have proven too difficult for other (typically official) investigators; we are told that he is on many an occasion able to solve a problem without leaving his home. He specializes in solving unusual cases using his extraordinary powers of observation and logical reasoning, and frequently demonstrates these abilities to new clients by making on-the-spot deductions about their personalities and recent activities. Holmes lived from the year 1881 at 221B Baker Street, London, an upper-story flat (in early notes it was described as being situated at Upper Baker Street), where he spent many of his professional years with his good friend, Dr. Watson, and with whom he shared rooms for some time before Watson's marriage in 1890. His landlady, Mrs. Hudson, maintained the residence. He retired to the Sussex Downs to study bees with a final book, The Practical Handbook of Bee Culture with Special Emphasis on the Queen, which he famously gave to the German spy Van Bork as a clue to his identity.

But these are no matter. Sherlock Holmes has always been a part of my life. My Grandfather was a Sherlockian and this was my way to understand him as a person. He was also a Yankees fan who was buried with a scorecard my mother slipped into his coat pocket. I am not a sportsman, but a bookworm. I have spent many evenings with Holmes and Watson and my love for them and their stories have kept me warm. I choose these, as a way to make them fresh and work with them in ways other forms simply cannot. Conan-Doyle has something here that he could not capture in any other of his many, many writings. I firmly believe that he was not happy, or contented that the public loved Holmes more than any of his literary projects. But these stories and the words that make them are much loved and I know that my job as poet is first to not destroy what is before me. However, the power of these stories can never let that happen! I am not sure what these will hold as all innovative writings thrive on the unknown, but for now, Come Watson the game is afoot!

Best, Geoffrey




Widow of The Hound of the Baskervilles

For Gustave Morin

     wid·ow

       1. A woman whose husband has died and who has not remarried.
          2. Informal. A woman whose husband is often away pursuing a sport or hobby.
          3. An additional hand of cards dealt face down in some card games, to be used by the
                   highest bidder. Also called kitty.
          4. Printing.
                1. A single, usually short line of type, as one ending a paragraph, carried over
to the
                   top of the next page or column.
                2. A short line at the bottom of a page, column, or paragraph.

Tobacco Used: Peterson's Sherlock Holmes Mixture in Black Churchwarden pipe

Text Used : Complete Sherlock Holmes, Volume I (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)
by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Kyle Freeman (Illustrator, Introduction, and Noted by)

    * Publisher: Barnes & Noble
    * Pub. Date: October 2004
    * ISBN-13: 9781593082031
    * Sales Rank: 1,429
    * 709pp
$9.99 !!!

Synopsis

The Complete Sherlock Holmes, Volume I, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, is part of the Barnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics:

    * New introductions commissioned from today's top writers and scholars
    * Biographies of the authors
    * Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events
    * Footnotes and endnotes
    * Study questions to challenge the reader's viewpoints and expectations
    * Bibliographies for further reading
    * Indices & Glossaries, when appropriate

All editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences—biographical, historical, and literary—to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works.




Widow of The Hound of the Baskervilles
For Gustave Morin

My occupation
Appreciation
Lens
Themselves

Mastiff
Spaniel
The world
You say

Skull

Inadvertently
Family
You

The fire
These columns
Gate
Closed

Marks
Gesture
A thing
Recommend
With you

Moor
Of that
Sentiment
Mortimer
-ing
to us
away
end

Life
Detective
Holmes

A limp
Other

Of it
Beard
Will
Sands
Get it

Study
Surgeons
Boot

Are exalted
Marked
Share it

Farther end
Bags

Of it
Face
Woman
Her
Family
End

Was intended
Attention
Mysterious

Over it
To me
House
A place
Words
Convey
Baskerville hall

Study
Night
Name
Moor
Laugh
Loved
Done

Cleared
Fastened

Me
Country
Before
Call it
Hand
Goes
Charles's death
Died
Woman's hand
Down
Of earnestness
Doing
My visit
See you
Done

Effort
Wrote it

House
Point
Letter
It

Morning
Of the tragedy
Moor
Mind
To the convict
My grasp
Was empty
Knew
The world
By the hand

Empty hut
Look
Moment

Case
Wife
His sister
Is his wife

Hall
After
Veins

Watson
Darkness
Eyes with tears
And joy

Trail
With the police
Sir Henry
Sherlock Holmes
To-morrow
End

To do it
Mourn him
Your help
And expectations
Amused exultation
Series of portraits

Presume
The lace
That is evident
Juncture
That message
You cannot come
Home

To do
Shouldn't do it

Sure of her grip
of a desperate woman
Stapleton
Sir Charles
Remaining silent

Now
A house ahead of us
From it
Mirabel screen

This end
Had seen
Fog is over the path
The wall of fog
Down

Giant hound was dead
In the darkness
His face was buried in his hands
Only want our man
Open this door

Her neck
And so atone
Lamp towards it
Tonight

Fierce merriment

Boot
Ever buried
Debris

The russet slopes of the moor
From memory
May have forgotten

And with the neighbors
Murderer
Cult still remained
Most likely to elucidate it
A deperate and dangerous man
Rival of the baronet
Purpose for which the beast was used

Own observations
Might be offered
On the way

Ekleksographia:
Wave Three

May, 2010

Poetry

Geoffrey Gatza

Geoffrey Gatza is the editor and Publisher of BlazeVOX [books] and the author of seven books of poetry; Kenmore: Poem Unlimited and Not So Fast Robespierre are now available from Menendez Publishing. HouseCat Kung Fu: Strange Poems for Wild Children is also available from Meritage Press. He is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY (1993) and Daemen College, Amherst, NY (2002), and served as a U.S. Marine in the first gulf war. He lives in Kenmore, New York with his girlfriend and two cats.