It may be that I am just a geek when it comes to word-related things, but when I really want to spend time doing something just for me, it is either scrapbooking or writing. Lately, I have been slacking on my writing. Mostly because it was required for school, and it was the less-fun technical stuff that you have to dredge up for a thesis. But we are on the precipice of National Poetry Month which happens every April. I know that the majority of people aren’t into poetry, but I think that it is because if it is taught in school, it is the old serious classic poetry that is hard to understand or really stiff and uptight sounding. But there is a lot of fun poetry out there… and there would be more if YOU would write some.
It is simple. I promise. You can just pick a prompt and go. It doesn’t have to be something earth-shattering or life-changing. It can just be some playful words on a page. It is no more complicated than any other writing you may do. Do you ever have trouble writing a whole blog post? Just poetry-ize it and keep it simple, loose and moving. Margie Romney-Aslett's blog has that sort of poetic feeling as you read through it. If you are in need of a prompt, check out…
- http://blog.writersdigest.com/poeticasides/ (he lists prompts on Wednesdays and will have a prompt-a-day during April)
- http://bigtentpoetry.org/2011/03/monday-prompts-march-28/ (they list a prompt every Monday and people return to share their poems on Fridays… they are also doing multiple prompts [one for each day] in April).
- http://rachelmckibbens.blogspot.com/ (she doesn’t update her blog with prompts regularly, but her prompts are always interesting, thought-provoking and can be intense [like her poems])
- Susan G Wooldridge’s book Poemcrazy is probably the best resource for someone who wants to play with writing poetry. She talks about different ways of looking at things, creating a “word pool” of your favorites, and other simple things to do to start writing. I have almost worn out my copy of this book. The other nice thing about it is that you can read from any section. You don’t have to start at the beginning and read through. It is great to pick up and read a chapter here or there as time permits.
- And of course, there is LOLCat poetry. One of my personal favorites. There is even a poetry magnet kit you could get to inspire you. My friend, Dana, has a great example on her blog My Gorgeous Somewhere. Just write something from a cat’s point-of-view and you can use the online translator to change it into LOLcat language. I have a couple poems from the archives, that I did in conjunction with Dana’s now-defunct website Read Write Poem.
- Or if you want to go low-tech, just have a friend or family member give you three random words… use them in a poem. Simple Simon.
Do you have any experience with writing or reading poetry? Was your last attempt at creating a poem during some point of your junior high career? It is not too late to try again. And if you have experienced writing poetry… are you still doing it? Now is your chance. Grab any scrap of paper and something to write with. Jot down a quick poem. Less than five minutes. You can do it. Have I tempted you yet? C’mon… you know you are dying to have fun and write a little poem. I double-dog dare you.