Get Vaccinated!

Here’s today’s prompt from Robert Lee Brewer’s Write Better Poetry blog: take the phrase “Get (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “Get Smart,” “Get Incredibly Overwhelmed by the Beauty of Spring,” and/or “Get This Poem Written.” Hope you’ve been getting something out of this year’s challenge; I know it’s been firing me up.

Get vaccinated!
I won’t be keeping a social distance
and we won’t be wearing masks
nothing will come between our lips

Get ready!
I’ve been cooped up for more than a year
frustration like a pressure cooker
simmering— about to erupt

Get Naked!
I’ve gone crazy from lack of touch
my hands will slide along every inch
of your skin savoring the heat
and smooth intoxication of your body

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Les Fleurs du mal

To honor Charles Baudelaire on his 200th birthday, I wrote a prose poem from Robert Lee Brewer’s Write Better Poetry blog:

For today’s prompt, write a persona poem for an inanimate object. A persona poem is when you write a poem in the voice of someone (or in this case something) else. So write a poem in the voice of a pair of scissors, a picture frame, smart phone, or some other inanimate object.

Les Fleurs du mal

Dust drops like dandruff as you finally touch me after a languished abstinence. My spine creaks and cracks having been still for years or more. I stink like the musty old shelf that has been my home yet you open me up and inhale deeply as though enjoying my musk.

Before we were together, information only spread in sounds and memories— stories and songs from grandparents to fidgety children. Then you learned how to leave your mark, scratches on stone, indents in clay, pigment on parchment and your words could no longer be forgotten, only ignored.

Now you flip bits, make tablets glow and leave me to decay but there will come a day (I can feel it in the atmosphere) when sparks will no longer flow and you, my dear reader, will take me in the candlelight and caress my cover like an eager lover.

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Poetry is…

From Robert Lee Brewer’s Write Better Poetry blog: For today’s prompt, write a metaphor poem. A simile is when something is like a something else (example: I am like a tree); a metaphor is when something is something else (example: I am a tree). So take a moment to consider possible metaphors and then poem them out.

Poetry is…

that grain of sand irritating
the foot of your soul

a paper cut across your fingerprint
leaving blood on the keys

the scab forming over a trauma
and poets can’t stop picking

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My Bully

From Robert Lee Brewer’s Write Better Poetry blog:

For today’s prompt, write a villain poem. You could write a persona poem from the perspective of a popular villain (like Count Dracula, Thanos, or Dolores Umbridge). Or write a poem with a person doing a villainous thing (like eating the last piece of pie or littering). As always, have fun with it.

My Bully

I ran but he was faster
then turf struck my face
and a muscular arm locked
itself around my neck.

This must be how the mouse
feels after the pounce.

Heart thumping like a flat tire,
I didn’t struggle as he pulled
my Road Runner lunchbox
from trembling fingers.

As a short chubby boy,
I was more than willing to break the code
of the schoolyard and tattle.

The vice principal told my bully
to give it back and he did,
without protest.

But I now doubt it was about theft
and wonder what would have happened
if I hadn’t run.

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For my Muse

Here’s today’s prompt from Robert Lee Brewer:

For this Two-for-Tuesday prompt:

  • Write a change poem and/or…
  • Write a don’t change poem.

For my Muse

She changes every night
but I barely notice
until two weeks pass
and she’s brighter
than a nightingale song.

But then she’s gone
for a week or more
when a dark mood
shades her countenance
like a careless remark.

Patience—
she will return.

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My First Crush

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “The First (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “The First Kiss,” “The First Day of the Month,” and/or “The First Time I Rode a Bike” (which, by the way, ended with me in a fence, because we didn’t cover how to brake).

My First Crush

I craved cooties as a young boy
never thought girls were icky
still don’t after two divorces

I clearly remember my first crush
no names since we’re Facebook friends
and she doesn’t know

At least I hope she doesn’t know
I’d have rather go unnoticed than rejected
especially back in elementary school

I knew I wouldn’t have a chance with her
a future cheerleader while my parents
shopped for me in the “husky” section

I concocted elaborate fantasies
in my immature mind with only a vague
notion of love and even less of sex

I just knew I wanted one
like a dog chasing a car

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The trees are active tonight…

For today’s prompt, write an active poem. That could be a poem comprised of active (vs passive) verbs. But it could also be about exercising, playing a sport, or keeping your mind active. Any activity would do, I suppose, even watching the paint dry.

The trees are active tonight—
I can hear them outside my window
shuffling in the early spring breeze
like college kids primping for a party.

They’re about to bloom—
golden buds emerging
from gray branches—
all that pent up tension
about to spurt forth
in a haze of exuberance

all over my car.

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Canis Lingua

For today’s prompt, write a communication poem. All poems communicate something, I know, but I’m thinking of different ways people can communicate: text message, letter, signs, and even speaking dialogue. Of course, there are forms of communication as well, because people love communicating.

Canis Lingua

I speak dog— not fluently— but I get by
I’ve had a lisp since I lost my tail

We don’t talk politics or poetry
canine aesthetics are very different
more concerned with smells and rolling

We communicate with smiles
and eyes and panting tongues
head tilts and play bows

We’re pals sharing the joy
of rough-housing— the suspicion
of strangers and the sorrow of solitude

We drink life straight from the bowl
and sing praises to the moon
every chance we get

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My Apology

For today’s prompt, I want you to answer the question, “What does the future hold?” Then, make your answer the title of your poem and write your poem. Your answer could a general idea about the future like “Robots Will Rule the World” or a more personal thing like “Veggie Pizza and Sweet Tea.” Even if it’s not in your title, I’m hopeful the future holds a lot more poeming.

My Apology

I freely admit it’s a selfish thought
but I’m glad I won’t be around to suffer
as we conclude our transformation
of the world from Eden to Hades.

I’ve seen enough to know the decimated survivors
will curse their ancestors from storm shelters
underground after another scorched day coaxing crops
from poisoned soil with reclaimed water.

I leave this poem as an apology to the future,
folded in a book I hope will survive the flood.
A lot of us saw it coming and we tried, we tried,
to turn back the tide but greed prevailed.

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My Life So Far

For today’s prompt, write an introduction poem. Introduce yourself, introduce a friend, or introduce a stranger. If you don’t wish to introduce yourself, consider writing a persona poem (a poem in which you write from someone else’s point of view like Emily Dickinson or a bumblebee).

My Life So Far

I’ve been playing the poetry game
long enough that I’ve lost track
of how many have been published.
But not so long that I don’t feel
that thrill through my sinews
when one gets accepted.

This is my tenth poem-a-day challenge.
It’s addictive, like a runner’s high,
exerting and exhorting myself poetically—
just put one word in front of the other
until you cross the finish line in May.

Why run a marathon? Why climb Everest?
Why spend the cruellest month each year
writing as if Shakespeare were holding
a Glock to my head? Because the rejections
still suck the enthusiasm from my art
but if I keep trying I hope
to someday get it right.


Welcome to National Poetry Month!

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