This generative poem is built from “spam, code, thesis work, and a little bit of language’s heart.” Each part of the poem is organized into three strophes: the first one uses a larger font, the second one consists of a single word, and the third uses three words. Upon opening the poem, the first strophe is selected randomly from a dataset, after which it begins a sequence that reads coherently from one textual generation to the next. The second and third strophes are always independently randomly selected from their datasets, creating new textual combinations with the constant sequence in the first strophe.
If you focus your reading on the first strophe and read it sequentially, you’ll get a strong sense of what the poem is about, but you’ll be missing some of the wildly creative combinations that result from Jhave’s word choices and generative algorithms. So while this poem never really ends (by itself), you can get a sense of closure by sensing the logic behind the word choices and phrases generated. And there is just enough of a predetermined logical path to keep us from getting lost in the poem’s “infinite inbox.”
P.S. I received a note today from Jhave about this poem: “To give a bit more info: middle word is from thesis, bottom cluster is from a Russian spam site that auto-harvests words, it has in my mind one of the richest ecosystems of multi-syllable words online.”