I’ll always remember the moment I discovered that crypto wallets are recoverable based on twelve-word seed phrases. It was years ago and I was celebrating my anniversary with my husband at our favorite restaurant in Las Vegas, Picasso’s, inside the Bellagio. As Collin spoke, my eyes drifted to the painting over his shoulder—an abstract still life in orange, yellow and black—painted (as you may have guessed) by Picasso. It featured squiggly flowers springing up from a cubist vase.
Perhaps influenced by the celebratory champagne, the words “seed phrase” fused with Picasso’s sunflower in my mind. It occurred to me that the seed phrase was basically a found poem. (For more on my obsessive passion for found poetry, please see my post here.)
The idea of unlocking a golden treasure chest using a computer-written poem instantly fascinated me. I’ve been obsessed with poetry since I memorized Robert Frost in elementary school, and have since found a profound connection to my favorites like Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, and Allen Ginsberg. Bizarre as it is, I would rather find a scrap of paper with a weathered quirky grocery list that would inspire me to write a poem than money on the ground!
Back at the anniversary dinner, Collin mistook the whirlwind swirling in my mind for boredom, but I explained with the kind of exuberance only brought on by wine tasting menus that it was entirely to the contrary!
It’s no question to me now (or back then) that Bitcoin is changing the world at a staggering pace. The other side of that virtual coin is poetry—which has been making the world better through emotional expression and connection for over 4,000 years when the first poet, Enheduanna, began writing her poems in Mesopotamia. I realized that to bring Bitcoin and poetry together would bind together the very things I believe most strongly about.
Then, non-fungible tokens arrived. The glorious world of NFTs, and the amazing community around them, is bursting with energizing creativity and passion! When I received a gorgeous bouquet of irises for my birthday, I had the idea to create poems based on seed phrases as unlockable content poems tied to photographs that would also serve to inspire the poem. In keeping with the idea, all pictures are of living plants/flowers (i.e. seeds). I decided to only mint one copy of each piece, and to limit the whole project to a hundred pieces.
So far, the photography has taken me as far south as Key Biscayne and as far north as rural Pennsylvania. The photos serve as visual representation and inspiration for the poems, which I edit to achieve the visual emotion I think the flower or plant is trying to express. Then I go to work creating the unlockable seed phrase poem for each NFT in the collection. In keeping with the concept behind the series, each poem is kept secret and shared only with the owner.
Having majored in poetry, I’m meticulous with each word of a poem! Each one is hand-crafted solely from the list of real seed words. I use syntax to create meaning, and no additional words besides the actual seed words, which ensures that each Seed Poem could be a real seed phrase. It makes them a challenge and a joy to write, like a modernized crypto haiku!
Thanks very much to the awesome NFT Poetry community, the collectors that have already gotten in on the ground floor with Seed Poems, and to my husband for deciding to talk cryptocurrency while a Picasso winked at me from over his shoulder!