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Blackout Poetry
& Altered Prose:
Charles Dickens



Welcome to my blackout poetry quotes and altered prose from the works of Charles Dickens (1812–1870). This is a "collaboration" of Dickens’ words and my selective removal of words. Wording is in the exact order as the originals unless indicated as scrambled. The only modifications are punctuation and capitalization. —ღTerri


My eyes were wide,
      astonished every moment
      in wonder—
Staggered along
      the great nothing
      with a lantern in one hand.
~Terri Guillemets, "Epitaph," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Ghosts of the Mail," 1837, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 53


Tea in bed? Come on.
Good heavens! ridiculous,
What the dickens?!
~Terri Guillemets, "Tea in Bed," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, letter to John Forster, 1842 February 17th, Carlton House, New York, as published in Life, Letters, and Speeches of Charles Dickens, Vol. I, 1894, page 151


Invite madness to be a guest
in books and music and words.
~Terri Guillemets, "True Art," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "To Be Read at Dusk," 1852, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 241


To kill words with fear,
It's a dreadful thing.
      —Don't.
~Terri Guillemets, "Censorship," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 197


Dear Happiness,
      i was not myself
      i was mad.
But i am restored:
      read my heart—
      it is glowing,
      it's joy, it's wonder;
The truth is there.
~Terri Guillemets, "Epiphany," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 214


Happiness was crying out your name:
      Don't weep
      Know deep joy
      Wonder, forgive, care—
Your truth is always there.
~Terri Guillemets, "Your Heart," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 214


His heart whispered in his ear:
      "Change,
      Be better,
      Rest without doubts."
~Terri Guillemets, "Revision," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 214


Morning rain, gales blowing,—
linger in bed by the fire,
heartily glad to see the wild clouds,
to look up at the gusty sky.
~Terri Guillemets, "Stormy Morning in Bed," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, Little Dorrit, originally published 1855–1857, 1868 edition, as published in The Works of Charles Dickens, 1899, Chapter IX, page 109


The ghost of humanity—
a distraught melody
in the voice of a haunted man.
~Terri Guillemets, "Relic," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 152


The question is the journey. ~Terri Guillemets, "Wonder always," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "To Be Read at Dusk," 1852, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 241


It is passion, determination, and good
that connects you to the vigour of life.
~Terri Guillemets, "Strong," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 196


My time—
book doze,
deep thought,
quiet life,
and work.
~Terri Guillemets, "Sums," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Ghosts of the Mail," 1837, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 53


A strong woman, freedom, and life—
never a brighter glory and radiance!
~Terri Guillemets, "His Daughter," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities, 1859, Book the Second: The Golden Thread, Chapters XVI: Still Knitting and XVII: One Night, as published in Works of Charles Dickens, 1867, Library Edition, Vol. XXIII, page 185


The shadows of night
journey into coffee
at six in the morning.
Now conquer work!
~Terri Guillemets, "Ready," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, Hard Times, 1854, Book the Second: Reaping, Chapter VI: Fading Away, 1868 edition, as published in The Works of Charles Dickens, 1899, page 170


A trembling heart — rusted red,
silent, haunted, solitary,
forgotten, moody, struggling...
~Terri Guillemets, "Lonely," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, page 153


God stood at the bedside
      tears stole down his cheeks,
      life had branded him
      with the heavy hand of time
      upon the old man's face—
"My son, rest."
~Terri Guillemets, "Final," 2018, blackout poetry created from Charles Dickens, "The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain," 1848, as published in The Complete Ghost Stories of Charles Dickens, edited by Peter Haining, 1983 edition, pages 196–197



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