Oulipost 22 — Antonymy: Tragic Unbound Papers

Tragic Unbound Papers

Indeed, all villains are not naked
Saracens or unmasked redeemers.

There were a single
keeg’s rejects
not of an
unnumbered worst
still photo,

unfounded under tragic
unbound papers and text-based
biographies. No, we won’t lose
the Penguin or Lex Luthor,

but we won’t lose momentary
Roaring-Twenties FBI agents
or clear-headed old boys, either.


The original paragraph was “But not all heroes are caped crusaders and masked avengers. Here are one geek’s picks of the 10 best movies based on comic books and graphic novels. Yes, you’ll find Batman and Superman, but you’ll find Prohibition-era gangsters and confused teenage girls, too.”

Barbara VanDenburgh, ‘Top 10 Comic Book Movies’, The Arizona Republic, 22 April 2014, Online edition <http://www.azcentral.com/story/entertainment/movies/2014/04/21/top-comic-book-movies/7980025/&gt; [accessed 23 April 2014]


In Oulipian usage, antonymy means the replacement of a designated element by its opposite.

You can find more fun word play in the comments on the Antonymy prompt post. 


It’s relatively easy to replace black with white, odd with even, red with green. But what is the opposite of “of?”  The opposite of “caped?” This one was a lot of fun, and has, dare I say, potential.  And I learned a new word.  “Keeg” is the antonym of “geek,” as in, “My dad, you know, he’s such a keeg he can’t even answer a phone call on his smart phone.”


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