Completely Natural

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Complete (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: “Complete Best Day I Ever Had,” “Complete Guide to Writing Poems,” “Completely Wrong Way,” and “Completed Set.”

Completely Natural

My favorite apiarist
gave me some honey,
now dissolving in my tea.
Collected from her hives,
it’s completely natural,
tastes sweet as a simile.

This mug from which I drink,
this computer upon which I write,
are both every bit as natural,
produced by the many hands of man
as honey is vomited from the mouths
of bees as it has for eons.

We’re all as natural as the air.
After all, what else is there?

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The Four Freedoms

Time for our fourth (but not final) Two for Tuesday of the month! Pick one prompt or use both…your choice!

  • Write a free poem.
  • Write a not free poem.


The Four Freedoms

“Freedom isn’t free”
or so I’ve heard.
It isn’t hungry either
nor is it fearful.

I encourage you speak out
even though I don’t agree.
I defend your worship
even though I don’t believe.

Be not afraid.
There’s no free lunch
but I’m happy to share.

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Flat Stanley

For today’s prompt, write a correspondence poem. Maybe write a poem that would fit on a postcard or in a letter. Or write a poem about correspondence school. Or jump into newer forms of correspondence like e-mail or text messaging. Of course, not all correspondence is connected to communicating; sometimes one thing corresponds to another by being similar.


Flat Stanley


As a boy I wished I could mail
myself to exotic locations
like Dayton or south of the border:
Kentucky. My wanderlust was strong
even then as I explored atlases
with my imagination.

Flat Stanley was my avatar.
I sent him to my distant Hoosier
grandparents and my few far away
friends. Then I looked up the addresses
of city halls in New York, Miami, Seattle
and off he’d go, first class.

It wasn’t long before I tracked down
embassies in London, Paris, Berlin, Tokyo.
His final trip was to McMurdo Station—
he never came back. Stanley was my scout
and I’ve followed undeterred in his razor
thin footsteps as a grown up, par avion.

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Sketching Sonnet

For today’s prompt, write a sketch poem. My initial thought is to write a poem that’s like a sketch of a moment or an object. But you can play around with sketchy people or situations. Or just sketch something else together.

life-drawing-3880339_640Sketching Sonnet

I wish I could draw,
place pencil to paper,
leave delicate lines,
shade, crosshatch.

To sketch a face recognizable.
To alter its expression
with a simple line
to the eyebrow or cheek.

But my best efforts are poor cartoons
so I’ll stick with poetry
which is also mere marks
on a page that evoke emotion.

I wish I could draw, so you could see
how beautiful you are to me.

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Power Outage

For today’s prompt, write a dark poem. Cave poems, poems at night, and no electricity poems–these are all appropriate for today’s prompt. Of course, dark has several other connotations as well. An underdog is often known as a dark horse, a villain may have a dark heart, and Batman is known as the Dark Knight. Heck, when I was little, I thought Darth Vader was Dark Vader.

Power Outage

The street lights were extinguished
like a candle after midnight mass,
so we couldn’t watch the snowfall
though I heard sleet skittering
across the crust of ice.

No chattering meteorologists
from the silent television.
No buzz of computer fans.
No whir of refrigerator motors.
No exhalation of furnace blowers.
No rumble of distant traffic.
Not even the scrape of a plow
to disturb our night.

I’ll listen to your dark curls
cuddle my chest as we warm
each other ‘neath the blankets
and await the return
of a postmodern age.

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Licentious License

For today’s prompt, write a license poem. There are many different licenses available to people. Fishing license, driver’s license, license to plate, license to kill, and marriage license. Poem doesn’t have to be about the license, but it could mention a license, happen at a licensing office, or well, use your poetic license.

Licentious License

I’ve been studying for my license.

My Gluttony comes as easy
as pouring another glass of red
as does my Pride,
since I self-published
that chapbook of food poems.

I keep hidden the Envy
for my fellow poets
as they get for-real published
and Sloth will settle
after this poem-a-day April.

I’m worried about my Greed.
If I had any interest
there, I wouldn’t be a poet
and, for some reason, Wrath
doesn’t flare now that I’m old.

I write at this table of strippers,
toasting another week’s end
with loud music, expensive drinks
and lots of scantily clad inspiration,
so I expect a perfect score in Lust.

Wish me luck!

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Little Acorns

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Little (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: “Little Guy,” “Little Richard,” “Little Mermaid,” “Little Italy,” and “Little Words That Pack a Big Punch.” I think if you think about it for a little bit, you’ll find a big (or little) poem to write.

Little Acorns

From little pignuts,
mighty hickories grow.
That’s not as poetic
as the original
but there weren’t a lot of oaks
where I was a boy.

We had untold pignuts
crunching underfoot.
Being little boys
we’d fight, whipping
those little green projectiles
as fast as possible,
despite the maternal warning:

You’ll put someone’s eye out.

We did our best
and nearly succeeded.
Kenny didn’t scream
or even cry ouch.
He just stood up
and walked inside
holding his left eye.

He was fine
after a few days
wearing a white patch.

If they’d given him a black
one, we could’ve played pirates.

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The Visit

For today’s prompt, write a reason poem. If this prompt seems unreasonable, just remember all the reasons you write poetry or enjoy cooking, dancing, singing, etc. Or provide a reasoned argument for your lack of reason. Only you know your reasons.

The Visit
for M.C.

You came back home
a few days after
you were dead.

I woke up to the sound
of you charging
through the house,
hunting phantom mice
like when you were young
and could leap
to the top of the armoire
as easily as lapping milk
from a saucer.

Even in my barely awake state
I knew something was wrong.
I spoke aloud,
“There shouldn’t be any cats in this house.”
then heard you charging up the stairs
like all those pre-dawns
when you’d lie in wait
to pounce the moment I stirred.

You jumped into bed,
happy mrowling,
bouncing higher
and higher
then you were gone.

Of course, it wasn’t you.
You hadn’t been anywhere
since that final
visit to the vet.
It’s reasonable to assume
that my sorrow conjured
you back in a dream.

I can both know it wasn’t real
and still take comfort from your visit.
Your ghost, my grief,
these dreams and memories,
they’re all in my head.

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Time for our third Two for Tuesday of the month! Pick one prompt or use both…your choice!

  • Write a catch poem. Catch a cold, a ball, a fish, or someone’s eye.
  • Write a release poem. Release your anger, a ball, a fish, or someone’s head (from a head lock while wrestling, of course).


I’ve cast my line
into the pond of inspiration
every day this April,
bait provided by Brewer.

Some days I get a soggy shoe,
other times a plastic bag
but eventually a nibble
to reel in with hope.

Most of the poems
I find on the hook
are minnows, doggerel,
best thrown back

but sometimes I catch
a real beauty, shiny
and fat which I clean,
gut and grill then leave

on the shore to nourish
the next passerby.

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For today’s prompt, write a prediction poem. Make a prediction. Write about another person’s correct or incorrect prediction. Or, you know, be unpredictable.


The sun will rise tomorrow.

The days will grow ever longer
for another two months or so
then they will shrink.

Men will fall in love
despite their best efforts.
They will try to hide
their feelings or deny
them or laugh them off
as a childish crush
but men will fall in love.

Eight months or so from now
there will be dark days.
The sun will abandon
us for Southern climes
and men will wonder
if they should have said
something to you.

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