The Dictionary Poem Project is an ever-expanding list of words with pronunciations, etymologies, definitions, graphics and other information.

Each word’s meaning evolves from its standard origin and definition, finally becoming a dictionary poem that is more associative, visually graphic and poetic than a particular word’s conventional meaning. It’s something like jazz where I start from a word’s roots and then riff off expanding its standard theme beyond itself. For me the Dictionary Poem Project is the starting point for an experience, a journey into the center of language, design and the human condition. I not only write and design the individual poems. The form of the dictionary poem is also original with me.

My goal is to get the dictionary poems out into peoples lives where they can work their magic. Perhaps just for a moment these small artworks may create a clearing within whatever landscape the reader inhabits, blue sky pooled within each of us, each of us touching one heart to every living thing.*

* from the dictionary poem, world peace.

Jane discusses the project »

Jane talks about the origins and evolution of the Dictionary Poem Project with host Jeremy Goodwin on the March 6, 2020 edition of Cut & Paste, a podcast sponsored by St. Louis Public Radio.

HEC Media, produced and distributed by the Higher Education Channel in St. Louis, MO, created this video exploring the Dictionary Poem Project and exhibit at the Hi Lo Literary Café.

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