Spine Poem is a permutable text arranged on the spine of ten blank 200 page pocketbooks.
Information written on the spine is the most ignored paratext of books in digital contexts. This holds true for all kinds of retrodigitization such as done by Google Books as well as mock-ups in online shops like Amazon, which are fixated on cover information and illustration in addition to platform paratexts rather than content or materialities. Spine Poem tries to inverse this demediation of book paratexts in the context of the print-on-demand platform Lulu. It can only be arranged and read when ordered, making it a corporeal extension to the flatness of digital text presentation – the lines of this poem are defined by the amount of pages and the format of the books. The poem is based on a quote from the movie Strange Days (1995), which starts the introductory discussion in Jay David Bolter and Richard Grusins Remediation. Understanding New Media from 1999.