This narrative poem in French by Philippe Bootz is generated from constraints and possibilities, tapping into Jean de la Fontaine’s poetry, OULIPO, and the classical unities of Greek drama. Constructed around the concept of a domestic thriller, characters enter and leave a room, in which different events happen, leading to happy or sad endings, and a final comment on the story’s banality or unbearability, leading to the conclusion that one shouldn’t reread it.
Ironically enough, the words “Une autre!” appear in a large, insistent red font, inviting the reader to click on it and generate a new story. Since the story is obscured by dust, the reader must move the pointer (or finger on a touchscreen device) over the text to “brush” it off for enough time to read the text in the layer underneath.
Note: Here’s a suggestion for those who can’t read French to access the work. Generate the poem and save the page. Then reopen the saved HTML page, which will contain a generated text you can cut and paste onto your favorite translation software. I like Google Translate. But don’t stop there. Do this several times so you can read some of the variations. The pleasures of this text arise from the multiple generated narratives.