My goal is to memorize a poem by embedding it into a mountain. Then, recite the poem as I hike it again.
I’m doing this to remember both the poem and the mountain trail for life, to experience the poem as a journey, and to use the mnemonic associations to enrich my understanding of the poem.
The poem is the book length ascend ascend I still need to do a walking reading around my home to determine recitation time, but I’ve bought an action camera and several batteries to record the trail so I can practice at home, and try to align the hiking traversal with the space between loci.
Practical problems I anticipate are controlling breathing, my mnemonic method being too primitive and inflexible (more on that later), loci harvesting may need a second or third hike even with a camera, and the timing of the hike vs the poem length being too different.
For memorizing, I’m trying as much as possible to use the images in the poem and place them at spaced loci on the trail. So I took the first book, broke it into 4 sequences, and wrote down all the concrete nouns and actions. I’ll take a second pass to collect sound associations. I’ll use the nouns and verbs as images, the sounds as a secondary mnemonic. In further practices, I’ll add different senses and emotions to make the image more concrete, and try and include the loci and surroundings in the created image.
I haven’t included a peg system, but it might be helpful to have something give each mnemonic a sequence, beyond it’s physical location. Knowing that mushrooms like teeth and loam like mouth is the seventh image in the 3rd sequence would help me not to miss or skip an image right? Perhaps I could repurpose a spiritual cycle or philosophical series as a peg to avoid awkward and unpoetic combinations? (Sequence 1-4 could be the stages of awakening, or images 1-10 could be the ten oxherding pictures)
Should I use myself, characters, or a mix to act out and interact with the loci in something like a story?
Any other tips or advices?
I go hiking on Monday, rain or not, and I’ll continue building sound associations until then.
I’ll try and improve my methodology as I go, wish me luck!