Individual Work
Endemic Battle Collage

In 1986, Geof Huth published Endemic Battle Collage, a combination of poems programmed together through Apple BASIC. This digital project was inspired by the work of bpNichol, a poet that specialized in visual digital poetry. Due to changes in technology, much of the visual poetry published before the 2000s were unable to be viewed until modern archiving. Currently, Endemic Battle Collage can be downloaded as an emulator or viewed in the ELC (Electronic Literature Collection) Volume 2 as a video.

Huth describes this world of digital poetry as “kinetic visual poetry created for viewing via a computer.” The term kinetic references the motion of the poems on the screen using time and space. This motion takes the abilities specific to the digital medium and visualizes the poems according to their semantic meaning. Huth also includes beeps and buzzes that were available in Apple BASIC to enable a semantic audio function with words like “echo.” The work proves the technological capabilities that were present in the 80s and promotes the growth of digitally dynamic poetry. Although there is no interactive element, the work can still be described as more of an experience due to the speed of the video at points, the focus on seemingly random words, contrasting space, and the audio that confuses first-time audiences. Experiences like these are exactly what separate digital poetry, especially visual, from print poetry.

Information and emulator download cited from