Letting Life Lead
An Erasure Poem — Excerpt from Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson: The Black Spot
My life, a dreadful-looking figure.
I hear a voice.
“Will you give me your hand,
My hand, gripped like a vice.
I struggled to withdraw;
I dare not cry out.
A voice so cruel, and cold, and ugly
cowed me at once,
holding me in one iron fist,
leaning more weight than I could carry.
This I thought would have made me faint.
I was so utterly terrified.
The words ordered
a terror of mortal sickness.
I can hear a finger stirring.
I stood motionless.
I hear tap-tap-tapping into the distance.
I gather senses;
I reeled, hand to throat,
swaying for a moment,
and then fell
face to the floor,
calling to my mother.
But all in vain.
Video capture of the erasure:
writing, traveling, and tap dancing around town.
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