A Poetry Writing Prompt-A-Day 2013 – Thanks

Thanks to everyone who participated in our first annual poetry writing “Prompt-A-Day” project for National Poetry Month. Many poems were written and posted in the comments where these prompts were also posted in our Facebook group and they’ll remain in perpetuity in the posts below for future inspiration.

A huge thanks to all of the people who submitted writing prompts…we received so many more than we could possibly use…(only 30 days in the month!) We’ll definitely be doing this again next year…but in the waning moments of National Poetry Month let’s have every day be a day filled with poetry.

April 30, 2013: Stanley H. Barkan

Write a poem about the trees of your childhood . . .

Submitted by Stanley H. Barkan from Merrick, New York.

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 29, 2013: Suzanne Lummis

A prompt inspired by Suzanne Lummis’ essay defining the poem noir, forthcoming in Malpais Review:

Write a poem that begins “So the cops booked me on trumped up charges” and ends “I’m damned if I’ll talk”. Somewhere along the way the poet must incorporate one foreign phrase or word, or words.

Submitted by Suzanne Lummis from Los Angeles, California.

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 28, 2013: Maggie Westland

Find the nearest book (of any kind). Turn to page 8. Use the first ten full words on the page in a poem. You may use them in any order, anywhere in the poem.

Submitted by Maggie Westland from Thousand Oaks, California.

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 27, 2013: Jeremiah Walton

Write a poem about someone’s last day in a mental hospital after they are deemed “well” enough to reenter society, try and put yourself in their shoes.

Submitted by Jeremiah Walton from Bedford, New Hampshire.

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 26, 2013: F.J. Bergmann

Take a short poem by someone else. Use all the words that aren’t articles or pronouns in reverse order, with added words as needed, to make a poem on a completely different topic. (I call this process transmogrification.)

Submitted by F.J. Bergmann from Wisconsin.

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 25, 2013: Cecilia Woloch

“Throwing It Into Reverse.” There are two ways a poet can approach this:

1) If you have a poem-in-progress and need to shake it up, throw it into reverse by re-writing it starting with the last line first and ending with the first line. Sometimes this results in a much more interesting and surprising poem. Sometimes the reversed version can be combined with the original version to create a two-part “mirror poem,” along the lines of Natash Trethewey’s “I Was Asleep While you Were Dying.” At the very least, you’ll end up with some interesting juxtapositions and possibilities for re-ordering the lines of your poem.

2) As a generative exercise, write about an event as if you could throw the whole event into reverse, like a film running backwards, along the lines of Jeffrey Greene’s poem “Physics” or Sarah Maclay’s “Uncorsage” or Dorothy Baressi’s poem “Unkissing.”

Submitted by Cecilia Woloch from Los Angeles, California

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 24, 2013: Scott Wiggerman

All too often we get caught up with purely visual images; this is a prompt focused on aural ones.  Go sit somewhere outside (e.g., a park bench, front stoop, bus stop, etc.).  Listen carefully to all the sounds you hear, making a list of them (close your eyes if it helps eliminate visual cues).  Use approximations of sounds if need be (e.g., wha-wha-whee-ee to describe a bird noise).  After you have a sufficient list, read it aloud (more aural!) and choose five sounds, words, or phrases that resonate with you (or perhaps suggest additional images you hadn’t considered).  Use these as a basis for a nature poem titled “I Didn’t See It.”

Submitted by Scott Wiggerman from Austin, Texas

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 23, 2013: Jerry Carlin

Write a poem about the desire to be the moon in spring.

Submitted by Jerry Carlin from Concord, California

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/

April 22, 2013: Ruth Nolan

You are a raven, circling above a lost hiker in the desert. Describe the scene below you, writing from the raven’s point of view.

Submitted by Ruth Nolan from Burleson, Texas

If you write a poem from this prompt, post it as a comment underneath the prompt in the Poetry Super Highway Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/55010360875/