NaPoWriMo #28 – Telling a Story

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Day 28 of NaPoWriMo and the prompt was to tell a story, which is right up my alley since most of my poems I’d consider more “narrative’ than anything. The twist to the prompt was to tell the story backwards. What I worked with is a freewrite from a journal of an event that I experienced a while back and always wanted to do something with (It actually was a time I was a featured reader during National Poetry Month at the Indianapolis Artsgarden a few years back). It may not sound so “backwards,” yet the last 3/4 of the poem used to be the beginning as I was working with it, and I decided to flip it…and it seems much better this way. Anyway, here is my poem, “A Lunchtime Poetry Reading,” the prompt used, and then the April PAD Challenge. Enjoy!

A Lunchtime Poetry Reading

At the Artsgarden, the view of cars
passing beneath my feet traveling
the old National Highway was a high,
as if soaring in the sky; a stalker as
pedestrians scurry outside
to their next important meeting
or place to perch. Classical music
serenades shoppers taking a break
in this transparent room. Sparrows hop
across the floor or flit into indoor planted
trees in search of a better view – some morsel
to sustain a limited living. Poetry was spoken
into the microphone. Onlookers scattered
as if someone had yelled, “Fire!”
Behind the podium, I read my poems,
for those staying behind
to risk a nest of words in their minds –
proving poetry can thrive in a hungry environment,
it can be delivered or taken to go. Lunch poems
if given the chance can live inside the looking glass
where birds are the captive audience,
where people listen without making a peep,
where the trees absorb Monday and digest
a diffuse applause.

Day 28 NaPoWriMo prompt:

Today I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that tells a story. But here’s the twist – the story should be told backwards. The first line should say what happened last, and work its way through the past until you get to the beginning. Now, the story doesn’t have to be complicated (it’s probably better if it isn’t)! Here’s a little example I just made up:

The Story of a Day

She lay her head down on the table.
She climbed the stairs to her room and sat down.
The afternoon of the boarding house was cool and dusty.
She walked home slowly, watching the sun settle on brick walls and half-kept gardens.
Work lasted many hours. Office lights buzzing with a faint, mad hum.
Breakfast was a small miracle.
She thought it a wonder, as always, that she’d woken up at all.

Well, that’s kind of unsettling! But I think it works as a poem. Maybe you’ll have better luck working backwards toward a happy beginning.

Day 28 April PAD Challenge prompt:

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Important (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write the poem. Possible titles could include: “Important Documents,” “Important: Read Before Assembling,” “Important People,” and so on. I hope everyone finds something important to write about today.

If you get something to share, be sure and post it below in comments!

Keep writing!


NaPoWriMo #21 – Response Poem

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Today is Day 21 of National Poetry Month, and I had intended to use the NaPoWriMo prompt today, but instead I saw what the April PAD Challenge prompt was and decided to go that way instead. Today was Poem in Your Pocket day, and this was a chance to take a line from a poem and respond to it. I could have gone with a plethora of poets that I know and love their work, but I decided to go with a poet that I don’t know much about, and who was listed as one of the poets on the PAD Challenge, Jamaal May. I indeed liked his poem, and decided to work off of it. Granted this poem of mine is a little rough, but I think it’s one that I will work more with. Here is my poem, “Sitting in the Catbird Seat,” the prompt used, and the napowrimo prompt:

Sitting in the Catbird Seat
“When they said those birds were metaphors”
– after Jamaal May

She told me, years ago, I should be flying
as high as those eagles in the sky,
but in those days I felt fallen,
a woman without wings, uncertain,
unwilling to sing my own tune.

Later, it took years of nesting –
as a Ball State Cardinal,
where a little birdie told me
I was migratory, I could soar,
I could ruffle some feathers,

my writings weren’t all chicken scratch,
to free my hen pecked mind,
get all my ducks in a row,
spread my wings!

My old friend was wise
as an owl back in the day –
when I was a spring chick, and didn’t
realize I really could soar.

Day 21 April PAD Challenge prompt:

Today is Poem in Your Pocket Day! It’s a day to pick a poem to carry in your pocket and share spontaneously throughout your day. Click here to learn more.

For today’s prompt, write a poem that responds (or somehow communicates) with another poem. You can respond to any poem. If you’re having trouble figuring out which one, choose a poem from this following list of poems from collections I’ve been reading this month:

Day 21 napowrimo prompt:

Today I challenge you to write a poem in the voice of minor character from a fairy tale or myth. Instead of writing from the point of view of Cinderella, write from the point of view of the mouse who got turned into a coachman. Instead of writing from the point of view of Orpheus or Eurydice, write from the point of view of one of the shades in Hades who watched Eurydice leave and then come back.

If you get anything that you’d like to share, post in comments below!

Keep writing!


NaPoWriMo #11 – “Surprise” Ending

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! It’s Day 11 of NaPoWriMo already, and today’s prompt was an interesting one. It’s supposed to be a detailed poem about an object or a place, and then have more of an abstract or a “surprise” ending. I wasn’t sure what to write about to create such an effect, but decided to go with one of my nature themes…and the surprise may be that I wrote it in the first place, since it’s nothing that I really want to see happen…with that said, I’m posting my 11th poem for National Poetry Month, “The Bird Feeder,” and directly following is the original prompt. Enjoy…maybe…!

The Bird Feeder

The radiant goldfinch, a joy
to see, so sleek, so bright
as if cast in a spotlight:
the shining star,
among the more muted
song sparrows. He chirps
his solos in between hearty
beaks full of Nyjar seed, some
he shuffles off the edges
of the little wooden perch,
such a master of dance, full of life,
then the calm, dead silence –
those vibrant yellow feathers
floating in the sudden breeze
left behind by a hungry hawk.

The Prompt from NaPoWriMo for Day 11:

Today, I challenge you to write a poem in which you closely describe an object or place, and then end with a much more abstract line that doesn’t seemingly have anything to do with that object or place, but which, of course, really does. I think of the “surprise” ending to this James Wright Poem as a model for the effect I’m hoping you’ll achieve. An abstract, philosophical kind of statement closing out a poem that is otherwise intensely focused on physical, sensory details.

As always, if you get a poem that you’d like to share – leave it in the comments below.

Keep writing,


Writing Prompt Pit Stop: PoMoSco # 21 Pinch an Inch

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! I’m almost caught back up, one more after this one and I’m even with the days of National Poetry Month again, whew! So today’s PoMoSco prompt I chose to use was “Pinch an Inch,” and, just like it sounds it uses some math skills…or at least using a ruler and a text! I’m not big on math, but I have come to realize that a lot of poetry does use a lot of it…I just choose to ignore that fact! LOL! Anyway, I chose the novel, Prodigal Summer, by Barbara Kingsolver to get the needed words for my 21st poem of the month: “Nobody Territorial.” Enjoy!

Here is the Day 21 prompt, Pinch an Inch:

Begin with a source text of your choice and a ruler. Mark off a column of  text one vertical inch wide down and extending down one or more pages — you might choose, for example, to use an inch down the center of your page, or along the page’s left or right margin. Craft your poem using only words located within your vertical column inch(es).

If you decide to use multiple pages, locate your vertical column inch in the same location on each page (i.e. all center columns, all right margin columns, etc).

The Found Poetry Review. PoMoSco. Prompt 21. 22 Apr 2015.

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: PoMoSco # 17 Spelling Bee

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Today is day 17 of PoMoSco, and the prompt sounds a lot more complicated than it really is. The main thing is to find your seed phrase, and then find a source text that will generate a lot of words. The way that I wrote my poem was to keep the first word in the poem the same as the first word of the seed phrase. So, I used Vonnegut’s phrase: We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be. Hence, the first words of each line of my poem starts with w a w w p t b s w m b c w w p t b.  By running my source text through the generator provided in the prompt I was able to come up with a poem I was happy with. Here is my resulting poem, “Eagles Birding: Excited Arrivals.” Enjoy!

Here is the Day 17 prompt, Spelling Bee:

You’ll need your source text and a “seed” phrase, Your seed phrase is a sentence or fragment that contains at least 20 characters, which can be related or not to your source.

For instance, if your source text is a book on baseball, you might choose “Take me out to the ballgame” as your seed phrase. If your source text is on the Beatles, you might choose, “I Want to Hold Your Hand.”

Visit the Diastic Poem Generator at Enter your seed phrase and source text in the corresponding boxes, then click “Generate.”

The program will create a “spell-through” of your text. Using the “take me out to the ballgame” example, the program will search through your text for the first word that has T in the first position (it might be a word like “the,” “travel,” or “true”) and add it to your word list. Next, it searches for a word that has “a” in the second position (e.g. “cap,” “batboy,” “game”), and so on, until it reaches the end of your seed text.

Add the results to your word bank, and keep clicking “Generate” to add additional iterations. For a more experimental text, keep the resulting text intact. Otherwise, remove text to create your poem — but try to keep the words in order.

The Found Poetry Review. PoMoSco. Prompt 17. 17 Apr 2015.

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: PoMoSco # 14 Survey Says

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Here is the day 14 PoMoSco prompt, out of order, because I didn’t get my poem posted until two minutes till Midnight so I did make it on the 14th instead of the 15th…so I’ve actually made it a poem a day written and posted – and it’s halfway through the month! It’s going fast! For the “Survey Says” poem we were to come up with 5-10 questions to ask others, it could be family, friends, or complete strangers. I came up with 10 questions, but when it came to writing the poem I only used 6 of the 10. I did survey 10 friends/students/strangers, and they at least got some words or an entire line in my poem. When you go to my poem to read it, you will see the actual questions that were asked. Here is my poem, “Monopoly: To Confound The Wise & Strong.”  Enjoy!

Here is the Day 14 prompt, Survey Says:

Create a questionnaire about a given topic that contains between 5-10 free response questions. Ask your family members, friends, or even complete strangers to complete the survey.

The Found Poetry Review. PoMoSco. Prompt 14. 14 Apr 2015.

Writing Prompt Pit Stop: PoMoSco #13 Picture It!

Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Today’s PoMoSco prompt # 13 was right up my alley as it combined two of my loves, art and poetry! It was to make an erasure poem…using art in any way you wanted…. So, here is my Picture It poem, “Extraordinary Common Birds.” Enjoy!


Here is the Day 13 prompt, Picture It!:

Take your inspiration from Tom Phillips’ A Humument  ( and create a poem that’s part erasure, part art.

Instead of simply marking out the text you don’t need, use markers, crayons, paint and other materials to turn it into a picture. Not a strong artist? Experiment with collage, using cutouts from magazines and other sources to obscure your unused text.

Scan your completed work — or take a picture of it — and upload it to the site.

The Found Poetry Review. PoMoSco. Prompt 13. 13 Apr 2015.