With its six 5-line stanzas that can be selected line by line, this combinatorial poem uses a similar structure to Raymond Queneau’s “Cent mille milliards de poèmes” and Jim Andrews’ “Stir Fry Texts.” Larsen describes this as “a true hypertext in that it cannot be read linearly” yet she provides a mechanism to progress linearly through the stanzas and even provides a coda after reading the sixth stanza. Moreover, the background images change only when the “linear” reading link is selected, so even if one clicks on each line once to get to the original second stanza, that important contextual layer of context is lost. Reading the poem linearly does offer a lyrical narrative very much in the Romantic tradition, with a speaker going out into nature and having an aesthetic and philosophical experience. Combining the lines from different stanzas opens up some of the structure of the piece and leads to other insights beyond the linear narrative, so I recommend a hypertextual reading to supplement a linear reading of this musically charged piece.
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