Saturday, April 29, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Nine

Prompt:  Make a quick list of the following:  2 foods you ate last night for dinner, the topics of your last Facebook post or tweet, 2 foreign words or phrases, 3 adjectives you associate with “deadline,” and 1 memorable movie line.  Now use this list in a ten to fifteen line poem.

 Carefree Curves Ahead

One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas.
How she got in my pajamas, I don't know.
She wanted me to take a photograph.
“Do you like this look?” She asked, smiling for the camera.
“It has a certain je ne sais quoi.” I answered.
“Does the plaid make me look fat?”
“Uh, mas o menos.”
She looked at the stress on the seams.
“Maybe I shouldn’t have had that burrito with salsa.”
I glanced at her with anxiety when I realized
My pajamas fit her pretty well.
“Maybe we can run a 10k together later.” I suggested.
Nah,” she chuckled.
“Who needs the hassle?” 

Friday, April 28, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Eight

Prompt:  Think about a time when you were forced to be courageous and create a poem with elements of that experience. Avoid using the words “courage,” “bravery,”  “fearless,” or “daring.”  Incorporate at least five of the following words:  wobble, puzzle, hole, pretend, factual, mirror, fiction, distant, wall, cards, weather.  End your poem with a question.

 Don't Run

It was lovely spring weather
I stepped out the door
Noticed a lady walking her dog
Noticed it was a pit bull
It was not on a leash
The pit bull saw me 
Didn’t even wobble in his stride
Didn’t even pretend to be friendly
Wanted to make a hole in my body
Hurled himself at me with frothing teeth
I was backed against a wall
So I stood my ground
I swung my handbag above my head
Yelled some loud words
The dog stopped in his tracks
The lady called the dog back
Went on her way, apologizing
What do you think I shouted at the dog

Thursday, April 27, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Seven

Prompt:  Write a poem that incorporates as many of these “ugliest sounding words in the English language” as you can:  gurgle, curd, chunky, bulbous, munch, clogged, jowls, slurp, quark, honk, crotch, juror, sap, gripe, angst, gob, funk, jukebox, crackpot, bulge, Sputnik.  Extra credit:  Work in 3 or 4 of these most pleasant sounding words: chimes, lullaby, mist, murmuring, golden, wisteria, Shenandoah.

 Phatic Chit-chat

Hello, Sputnik Sap.
How are you? You bulbous, gob of moist phlegm.
Nice to meet you, too, Buttmunch. Let's do lunch sometime.
A penny for your thoughts, Curd.
Oh, back to the misty drawing board,
You know, barking up the wrong funking tree.
Well, no use slurping over spilt milk.
Yeah, I’ll cross that angst when I come to it.
But I may have bitten off more chunks than I can chew
Unless I decide to let sleeping gripes lie.
So, let me know if there’s anything I can chime in,
But don’t quit your crackpot job.
Oh, don’t add bilge to injury.
You know you can drop by our clogged lodge any time.
Yeah, have a rotten day!
Golden has left the building.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Six

Prompt:  Write a poem in which you find a map that leads to treasure.  To find what your “treasure” is, pick up the nearest book, go to page 22, and point to the first concrete noun you see.  That noun is what you discover in the poem.  Extra credit:  Make references to books, movies, or characters that deal with treasure hunting:  Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, Indiana Jones, Lara Croft, Pirates of the Caribbean, etc.

 Treasure Quest

The Obeah women looked out of her lair.
She hissed and growled and rolled her eyes.
Her teeth were nasty and so was her hair.
“You wan’ de treasure? You pay de cruel price.”

She provided a map all covered with stains
With an ominous X marked there in red.
It wasn’t far from the Kraken’s domain
Near the graveyard of ships and the dead man’s head.

We followed the trail through a jungle of snakes.
We tiptoed passed the cannibal’s home.
We floated a raft ‘cross a fiery lake,
And wandered our way through the catacombs.

At last we arrived on the sandy plot.
We found it there on a gritty dune.
“Aha!” The treasure for which we sought!
Christopher Robin’s Blue Balloon.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Five

Prompt: Take a moment to scan a few of today’s headlines and find a story that really irks you and gets you irritated. Title the poem by using a creative variation of the headline title. Create irregular stanzas and odd line breaks, allowing your poem to have a life of its own as you write quickly—try not to edit yourself, but tap into your subconscious. Be okay with images or phrases that don’t make logical sense. Write until your irritation has been expressed and only lightly revise your poem.

We Can’t All Move to Canada

Demented, narcissist, pathological liar,
Grandiose thinking, self-absorbed fascist, autocratic hypocrite
Who appears to feel superior to everyone,
And shows total disregard for other people
Breaks promises and obligations repeatedly.
Did I mention demented?

I will build a wall 
I will make them pay for the wall
I will clean up the swamp
I will release my tax returns
I will avoid conflicts of interest
I will not be one to take time off for vacations
I will surrounded myself with the best and brightest
I will replace bad healthcare with something wonderful

But together we have the power to resist 
And the power to overcome unbelievable incompetence and a pack of idiot sycophants.

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." 
Edmund Burke

Monday, April 24, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Four

Prompt:  Write a poem in the form of a spell.  Include ingredients that most likely wouldn’t be used in a traditional spell, such as: tie-tack, the color blue, a coffee thermos, a tiara, an avocado, etc.  Begin by making a quick list of these “non-spell ingredients” and then decide who or what you are bewitching.  Consider titling your poem: “Spell for_____.” 

 Spell for making you look great in a swim suit
And irresistible to the opposite sex.

One half-eaten pizza, a smashed bag of chips,
Six beer cans, (four crushed-two half full),
A dead battery from a power drill,
One greasy baseball cap,
A sweat-stained Duck Dynasty tee shirt with a hole over the navel,
Two crusty socks, one used gym towel,
A pair of jeans smeared with fish guts,
Ten hairs from a dog’s butt,
A handful of spent shotgun shells,
And the prongs of one deer antler,
Put behind the seat of a Ford F-150 pickup for 13 months.
Then remove to a black trash bag
And store in the sun for three days.
Deeply inhale the essence and repeat the magic words:
“Hell this stinks! Here, smell it!”

Sunday, April 23, 2017

National Poetry Month Day Twenty-Three

Prompt:  Write a 14-line poem that is a variation on the sonnet.  Look up the rules for both an English and an Italian sonnet and riff off one of those forms in a creative way.  Change up the rhyme scheme or do away with it. Make a rule for how many words are allowed per line or maybe each line must start with a noun.  Keep the 14 line structure, but get inventive with the rest of the form by creating at least 3 new rules.


All those stacks of greeting cards.  She sighed.
To keep? To sort? To close the eyes and dump?
Lids and plastic tubs, bags wadded in a lump.
Worn-down shoes still holding ghosts.  She cried.

Wrapping paper, rolls of yarn and ribbons tied.
Clothes still held her essence, there beside
Faded photos. Unnamed faces. Should she hunt
For names? Or give to kids? What would Mom want?

True treasures weren’t things to hold with hands.
Mornings on the back porch shelling peas,
Fears quieted by one who understands,
The happy songs, the jokes, the mended knees.

Share the love.  There’s joy to dwell upon.
Hand down her wonder, smile and carry on.