A Remington Noiseless Poem


I wrote this poem for the 2013 August Postcard Poetry Challenge and just was reminded of it while reading Crazy as a Cool Fox’s Sepia Saturday post about typewriters.

“I think getting a card that had been through a typewriter would be pretty cool.” Paul Nelson

Typing poetry straight out of my mind

to the card on this Remington noiseless

model seven is no easy task.

From a flea market to my daughter to me.

I don’t remember by mother’s underwood

being so stiff and LOUD and slow.  So

slow. I typed 36 words a minute on that

one. I type 80 words on my computer. Lucky

to type 3 words a minute here.  I took typing

in high school. Do not

remember 1 day in class.  Typed papers for

Seydou and for newsletters and after the ’67

Detroit, typed on an electric. At the

library typed index cards on a selectric, the

ball going round and across fast and smoth.

smooth, two oos. not

like this soundless/noiseless/LOUD Remington

noiseless model seven.  Let us not even consid

corrections. er.

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10 thoughts on “A Remington Noiseless Poem

  1. There have been so many typewriters in my life. My mother’s portable Olivetti – how many school assignments were typed on it? Doing typing lessons at school – I do remember them and resenting them. The various typewriters I worked with at the ABC from manual to electric and then to computers…mad stuff. Never noiseless. I used to do 65 wpm – not sure how many now. My paper used to be held together with liquid paper sometimes 😉

  2. I got a typewriter for my high school graduation present; it had a two-toned ribbon — black and white — and the white one was a substitute for liquid paper. Boy, those things were hard to use — remember the wrist action?

  3. High marks for you! Top of the Class!
    I also played at poetry during the last era of typewriters. Mine was a Bulgaria portable that I bought in London and wrote hundreds of epic odes. When it came back to America it refused to type anymore. Now I have to scan the old typewritten pages so they can be translated into computer files. Not as romantic.

  4. I typed on an electric typewriter at work, but used a small manual portable at home that was so lightweight, when I ‘threw’ the carriage the silly thing leaped halfway across the table! And I think I mentioned once a while back in another Sepia post that my high school typing teacher used to put on a record to keep us typing in an even rhythm, then clear off her desk & dance on top of it to the music. It was quite the sight.

  5. I remember my first typewriter, a Remington Selectric in bright red and it had the correcting ribbon Deb Gould mentioned. What a pain in the neck that was! Our typing teacher in high school, Sister Capistran, was a martinet. I will never forget her!


  6. I still have my mother’s Remington. I learned to type on it and I remember having so much trouble pushing the keys down. I couldn’t get the strike just hard enough. And I recall my fingers slipping between the keys and cutting a little finger quite badly. My folks bought me a portable Olivette that typed in italic. The keys were easier to hit, but I’m not sure why it was made to type only italic.

    Your poem brought back memories of the stages of typewriters I went through.

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