Flat Ozymandias

Earlier this year I shared my Lipograms, the new form called (ingeniously) “flat poems”. Shortly thereafter, I picked out Shelley’s Ozymandias as a poem which I could try to flatten. Here’s the result, and the original.

once ere our era, a man or woman came:
“saw an enormous carcass, no arms,
near an ear, a nose or sneer
no emo. was carve so
we see ever more.
over a remem-verse
‘name me ozemanus
crown me ever, rex over rexes
woe on mere men – swear
ozemanus owns our arena
oz never wears awae
nor comes over-won’.
no more was seen
save a scar, a crow
an area ever same.”

I met a traveller from an antique land,
Who said—“Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. . . . Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal, these words appear:
My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings;
Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal Wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.”

2 thoughts on “Flat Ozymandias

    1. Haha, perhaps I forget just how much Ozymandias was drilled into us in high school. I really like it and come back to it over and over. The flattening, well that’s just my fun constraint not to use certain letters.

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