Play and collaboration and spontaneity and complexity and creativity and rebellion are at the heart of the Gero-Punk Project.
At the most recent Gero-Punk Salon — this past sunny Sunday afternoon — ten of us engaged in a communal writing project, a version of what the Surrealist André Breton called the “Exquisite Corpse,” a collaborative creative process that taps into the collective unconscious.
In our version of the process, together we composed three eight-line poems, starting with three different prompts. Our writing prompts were inspired by our explorations of the broad theme of the Salon: the complexities of traveling through the life-course — and experiencing adult aging — as gendered beings.
What to try it? First, take a blank sheet of 9.5 x 11 inch paper and fold it length-wise as if making an 8-paneled fan. Unfurl the fan, so that there are 8 rows. Next, a brave soul writes the first line of the poem at the top of the sheet of paper, across the first row, and then passes the paper on so that the next writer can add the second line; they then fold over the top of the page, hiding the first line, so the next writer can only see the line immediately preceding what they are about to write. And so forth, until all 8 lines are complete.
Ta da! As if by magic, a lovely poem emerges!
Mystified that I am here
or what to make of changes
or want to not make change but be content
amongst the thousand witnesses of trees,
I am but a small speck of life.
Life so precious that to be a speck is a gift
and each speck is connected in infinite ways to all other specks.
No matter how long we study the connection, the answer is still inside us.
–Created by some combination of: Erica, Simeon, Ken, Terri, Alison, Teresa, Diane, Karen, Mary, & Jenny