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Friday Freeforall: Poetry Prompts to Keep You Going

7:56 p.m. — Walnut Creek

Hello all. Yes, I am a trifle late. Mom’s day in the city. I like to accompany her. Lunch at Japantown. Yum! That was my opening last night before my mom’s internet went wonky. I learned the panicky feeling people are beset with when they have a regular blog that goes out, not to mention the emails I knew were piling up! The time is now 11:45 a.m. and I am hoping to get this posted before something else happens.

We start, as always, with Donna’s Poetry Tow Truck and a prompt that says: Today, I will ask you to take one of your “ugly” words and transform it into something beautiful. There are several ways to approach this….. To find out the ways and to see what Donna is talking about, you know what to do. If you missed last week’s because you wait until I post Friday, trawl back through her posts. You are looking for a prompt on reverse sonnets. I know! These both sound intriguing.

The next site is The Sunday Whirl. Visit to see Brenda’s wordle and to read up on how it works, if you wish to post responses. Otherwise, enjoy a weekly wordle, the words of which come from responses to the previous week’s wordle. And be sure to go over to see what others have done.

Poetic Bloomings, hosted by Maria Elena Good and Walt Wojtanik, asks us to try a Japanese form: This week our featured form is the Dodoitsu. The Dodoitsu is a fixed folk song form of Japanese origin and is often about love or humor. Visit the site to learn the structure, and read the poems by the hosts in response.

For Carry on Tuesday, we have a line from Shakespeare’s Hamlet: Neither a borrower nor a lender be. Play with it before going over to the site to see what others have written and for a link to read other lines from Hamlet. You will be surprised how many you know..

One Single Impression offers us respect which can be approached on many different levels. To find out more go over to the site. Check out some of the participants’ offerings while you are there.

At Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Sunday Snaps’ Susan May James has three photographs ready for you to look at. They are lovely. If you use one, consider submitting your creation to Sunday Snaps: the Stories’  a collection of 52 photos and stories/poems. Susan is finalising submissions for her next book and has posted a deadline. Head to the stories’ link to read up on it.

Whether you like to read them or want to try writing one, this site is the place to play with limericks. I enjoy the whole site more every week. It is plain fun to browse. Go to Mad Kane’s Humor Blog for her Limerick-off Mondays and a lot more besides.

Jingle Poetry’s ‘Monday Potluck’ offers us Life in Free Verse. Remember to pop by and check the site. Next week they want us to focus on art.

Visit Magpie Tales for our other image prompt. The painting is by Thomas Hart Benton and if you aren’t sure what to do with the whole, pick an individual or a small group to write on. Ask yourself what story just happened, or is about to happen, here.

For you alliterists out there, here is ABC Wednesdays letter for this week: Gad zooks!   Can you believe we have traveled from A to Z one more time on ABC Wednesday?  Head over to read the rest of the Z prompt and for a link to zydeco music, which is great fun.

The three words this week for Three Word Wednesday are indecision, option, and fate. As always, visit them for their definitions. They have a particularly good source. I realised, this time, why what intrigues me more than the words are the definitions. A mini found poem can be written from them. When you look at the definition each week keep that in mind.

We Write Poems starts its prompt with: Elizabeth Crawford’s suggestion for our prompt is to use the dictionary (or thesaurus), find some words new to your vocabulary and use them in creating the poem you write this week! Go on over and read the rest of the prompt.

Poets United ends their prompt with: So this week we give you the prompt of loneliness. When does it strike you the most, the holidays after the family has left? When someone close to you has passed on? When you move away from your childhood home? When do you feel you’re most alone?. They always have more to help us choose possible paths, so go over and read the rest of the prompt and view the photographs. Loneliness is a powerful thing to write about.

Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Alpha to Omega Thursdays‘ says: Theta is the eighth letter of the Greek alphabet and the focus of our next alpha to omega challenge. Head over to see the two words chosen and to read their definitions.

New entry this week. I know several poets try their hand at flash fiction so thought I would include a site that looks open as far as focus and topic but is there as a place to post. I haven’t quite found my way around it but you younger brains out there may be able to figure it out. Flash 55 is a site hosted by the G-Man, who posts every Thursday…I think. Feel free to let me know in comments if you know how the site works. I did look for directions.

Remember to check out Elizabeth Crawford’s discussion site Writers Speak where she asks writers of all genres to stop by and talk about the life of a writer. She will post new topics every week around Friday. This week’s topic is a series of ten questions. We may answer one, a couple, or all. Here’s a chance to get to know our fellow writers and cyber friends a little more.

That should keep you busy and writing. If you think anyone else would enjoy these, click on the buttons below. If you have questions ask. If you write in response to any of these, both the people whose blogs you visit and I would love to read your responses. So, post!

I shall see you Tuesday for a new form; Thursday for a discussion of a topic yet to be decided [Hey! I’m on vacation!]; and next Friday for more of the same. Happy writing, everyone.

P.S. If I disappear it’s my mother’s internet.

 
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Posted by on 16/07/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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Friday Freeforall: Poetry Prompts for That Summer Something

9:13 a.m. — Walnut Creek

Hello all. I hope you have had a good week and will have a relaxing weekend.

We start, as always, with Donna’s Poetry Tow Truck and an interesting prompt that says in part: We are talking word families here, words that are related through etymology!… To find out the steps and read two examples, head over to the Tow Truck and check out the rest of the prompt. I have already seen results from a couple of you.

 

The next site is The Sunday Whirl. Visit to see Brenda’s wordle and to read up on how it works, if you wish to post responses. Otherwise, enjoy a weekly wordle, the words of which come from responses to the previous week’s wordle. This week’s is from three poems, one of which, I was tickled to see, was mine. And be sure to go over to see what others have done.

Poetic Bloomings, hosted by Maria Elena Good and Walt Wojtanik, has a regular prompt and a wild card prompt, this week. Visit the site and look it over, read the prompts and the poems by the hosts in response.

The line chosen by Carry on Tuesday is the first line of Edna St. Vincent Millay’s poem “First Fig”: “My candle burns at both ends“. I love the possibilities; play with it before going over to the site to see what others have written and for a link to read the poem.

Sunday Scribblings’ prompt is: woods. And One Single Impression offers us crater which can be interesting metaphorically. To find out more go over to the sites. You might check out some of the participants’ offerings.

At Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Sunday Snaps’ Susan May James has three photographs ready for you to look at. They play with visual texture and colour. If you use one, consider submitting your creation to Sunday Snaps: the Stories’  a collection of 52 photos and stories/poems. Susan is finalising submissions for her next book and has posted a deadline. Head to the stories’ link to read up on it.

Whether you like to read them or want to try writing one, this site is the place to play with limericks. I enjoy the whole site more every week. It is plain fun to browse. Go to Mad Kane’s Humor Blog for her Limerick-off Mondays and a lot more besides [I notice, this week, that she is becoming addicted to acrostic limericks, so if you need an extra challenge…]

Jingle Poetry’s ‘Monday Potluck’ offers us Siblings, Cousins and Friends. Remember to pop by and check the image that accompanies the prompt and also a new feature that involves music. Next week they are giving us a free topic week.

Visit Magpie Tales for our other image prompt. The painting is Wheatfield With Rising Sun, by Van Gogh. The colours are gorgeous, and I have seen at least one response from among you. If you aren’t sure what to do with a landscape, think of it metaphorically, or ask yourself what story just happened, or is about to happen, here.

For you alliterists out there, here is ABC Wednesdays letter for this week: Y. Again that is all I am giving you. The intro writer has been particularly creative to use the letter y. You should visit to enjoy the creativity. Read it for fun, if you don’t play.

The three words this week for Three Word Wednesday are cease, heat, and nasty. As always, visit them for their definitions. They have a particularly good source. I realised, this time, why what intrigues me more than the words are the definitions. A mini found poem can be written from them. When you look at the definition each week keep that in mind.

We Write Poems starts its prompt with: Oft it is suggested to writers, find your own unique voice in how you write. Good advice. However this week we’re asking you to find, understand, and use another’s voice in the poem you’ll write! Head on over and find out what else is suggested. This will be interesting to watch, as the poems come in. I initially quailed, but the brain has started working on it.

Poets United asks us to Please pen a poem about reading; you can be general or specific. They always have more to help us choose possible paths, so go over and read the rest of the prompt and view the photograph.

Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Alpha to Omega Thursdays‘ is back after a brief vacation to continue the challenge. The letter this week is eta. Head over to see the two words chosen and to read their definitions.

And, while not a prompt, I want to remind people to check out Elizabeth Crawford’s new discussion site Writers Speak where she asks writers of all genres to stop by and talk about the life of a writer. She will post new topics every week around Friday. This week’s topic is on revision of work, so is something we all should have an opinion on and interest in. I’ll revisit later in the week when the hammerers, cement layers, fibreglassers have finished the deck.

That should keep you busy and writing. If you think anyone else would enjoy these, click on the buttons below. If you have questions ask. If you write in response to any of these, both the people whose blogs you visit and I would love to read your responses. So, post!

I shall see you Tuesday for a new form [cue music for Jaws], Thursday for a discussion of a reader generated topic: freewriting, and next Friday for more of the same [and a new contender for those who write the occasional prose pieces]. Happy writing, everyone.

 
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Posted by on 08/07/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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Poem Response to Wordle #11

There will be two extra posts this week, dear readers. This one in response to Brenda’s latest wordle at The Sunday Whirl and one later in the week in response to We Write Poems.

Pulled for revision.

I read an article recently on the installation in New York’s Morgan Library and Museum and knew I wanted to write about it. Then the wordle came out. I had to change the forms of a few words and almost had to go with eleven words, but as I typed the poem floss fell into place. I’m not sure about the first two lines or, indeed, a couple of others, so comments appreciated if you are struck with something, even: This doesn’t work here. I don’t know why, but it doesn’t.

Whether or not you write, be sure to visit The Sunday Whirl to see what others have written. It’s fun to see the synchronicity, or diversity, of poems.

Also, if you haven’t been by, Elizabeth has the first discussion topic up at Writers Speak. Have you ever received glazed eyes from someone you are talking to about your writing? Stop by and tell your story, read others or respond to a comment.

See you tomorrow for an open prompt [if you are worrying, I will get back to form next week:)]; Thursday for bookmarkable sites; and Friday for the roundup.

 
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Posted by on 04/07/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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Friday Freeforall: Poetry Prompts Instead of Firecrackers

9:00 a.m. — Walnut Creek

Hello everyone. I hope all is well going into the weekend.

We start with Donna’s Poetry Tow Truck and a prompt that says in part: So this week, do some reading. Find a poem that is radically different from your writing.  (If you write imagistic free verse, find a tightly-metered rhyming poem. You get the picture.) Then follow the steps above to create your own poem that goes against type… To find out the steps and read the whole prompt head over to the Tow Truck and check out the rest of the prompt. It’s a challenge worth trying.

This is the last week for Writer’s Island and many of us feel the wrench. Losing two loved sites in a matter of weeks has cast a bit of a pall. But over on the island there is celebration of life. The final prompt says: So it is simple this week, please meditate on your vision of the future, be it for yourself, or loved one(s), or for the world — then share it with us… or let the image above spark your muse. Sail to the island for the farewell and to see the image and relax on the shores one more time.

The next site is The Sunday Whirl. Visit to see Brenda’s wordle and to read up on how it works, if you wish to post responses. Otherwise, enjoy a weekly wordle, the words of which come from responses to the previous week’s wordle. This week’s is from three poems. And be sure to go over to see what others have done.

Poetic Bloomings, hosted by Maria Elena Good and Walt Wojtanik, whom many of you know, have a form to follow this week: The Monchielle is a poem consisting of four five-line stanzas where the first line repeats in each verse. Each line within the stanzas consist of six syllables, and lines three and five rhyme. The rhyme pattern is Abcdc Aefgf Ahiji Aklml. Visit the site and look it over, read the prompt and the poems by the hosts in response.

The line chosen by Carry on Tuesday is: Is that all there is? from Peggy Lee. The question is interesting and might work as a repetition, so play with it before going over to the site to see what others have written and for a link to read the lyrics and hear the song.

Sunday Scribblings’ prompt is: give, or a form of the word. And One Single Impression offers us a celebration of tau day. To find out more go over to the site. You might check out some of the participants’ offerings.

At Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Sunday Snaps’ Susan May James has two photographs ready for you to look at. If you use one, consider submitting your creation to Sunday Snaps: the Stories’  a collection of 52 photos and stories/poems. Susan is finalising submissions for her next book and has posted a deadline. Head to the stories’ link to read up on it.

Whether you like to read them or want to try writing one, this site is the place to play with limericks. I enjoy the whole site more every week. It is plain fun to browse. Go to Mad Kane’s Humor Blog for her Limerick-off Mondays and a lot more besides.

Jingle Poetry’s ‘Monday Potluck’ offers us Saints, Monks and Meditation. Remember to pop by and check the image that accompanies the prompt and also a new feature that involves music. Next week they are giving us Siblings, Cousins and Friends.

Visit Magpie Tales for our other image prompt. The photograph is visually intriguing. I’m not sure what I will do with it; I know I want to try something. I will need to think of the illustration as a metaphor…

For you alliterists out there, here is ABC Wednesdays letter for this week: X. That is all I am giving you. The intro writer has been particularly creative to use the letter x. You should visit to enjoy the creativity. Read it for fun, if you don’t play.

The three words this week for Three Word Wednesday are bump, knuckle, and transfix. As always, visit them for their definitions. They have a particularly good source. These three words made me laugh, for some reason and I will try to get back to see what people did with them.

Part the curtains, swing the windows open wide! Take a fresh breath of sky, prepare to greet something old and make it new again! That’s our way to say with a flourish, take some older poem of yours, something you thought might be better expressed somehow, someday – that day is today! Revise or rewrite that poem. That is how We Write Poems starts its prompt. Head on over and find out what else is suggested. I dug my poem out this morning.

Poets United asks us to think and write about freedom: I would like to point out that freedom is so much more than a country or mind set. One can experience freedom in a million ways.  You can be a free spirit.  Freedom is being eleven years old and experiencing the first time your parents trusted you enough to leave you home alone. Freedom is the ability to have silence in a bustling household because dad decided to take the kids to the park. They always have more, to help us choose possible paths, so go over and read the rest of the prompt and view the photographs.

Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Alpha to Omega Thursdays‘ is taking a small break but Susan assures us she will be back after a brief vacation to continue the challenge.

And, while not a prompt, I want to remind people to check out Elizabeth Crawford’s new discussion site Writers Speak where she asks writers of all genres to stop by and talk about the life of a writer. She will post new topics every week around Friday.

That should keep you busy and writing. If you think anyone else would enjoy these, click on the buttons below. If you have questions ask. If you write in response to any of these, both the people whose blogs you visit and I would love to read your responses. So, post!

I shall see you Tuesday for another open prompt, Thursday for a discussion of sites worth visiting, and next Friday for more of the same. Happy writing, everyone.

 
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Posted by on 01/07/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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Tuesday Tryouts: Poems on Things That are Found

9:00 a.m. — San Antonio –> Walnut Creek

Hello dear readers. Tell me you didn’t see that coming! I was going to wait a week and throw you off balance but for the life of me can’t remember the exercise I was going to do this week, so found items it is. The exercise runs the same, but found includes a whole branch of poetry.

FOUND

Start by thinking about and then listing all the things you have found in your life. Leave room for notes with each item. You can do a companion piece to your lost poem, but make the list anyway. We are always on the lookout for topics to write on, so, resource pool! Possibilities include, a pet who was missing, a new word, a friend, your way [can be literal or figurative], an opportunity, an insight, a branch of the family tree, something you thought was lost.

Next to each find jot notes on what you remember. Try to include as many concrete and sensory details as you can.

Then, jot notes on any feelings and emotions you associate with each find.

Pick one from your list of things found. Decide whether you want to write in free verse or one of the forms we have been playing with or, indeed, a form you like but we haven’t played with yet. Choose the point of view — will the speaker speak in first or third person? The choice affects how the poem comes across, so you might choose one and mentally try the other once you have a draft. Consider whether you wish to include feelings, or just tell the story. Decide on the speaker’s tone: happy, ecstatic, tongue in cheek, humourous…your word choice will support the tone. And, if you don’t remember the whole story, make up whatever you need to convey the story you want to tell.

Then we have found poetry, poetry found in words already written [the most common form], or a photograph, or a painting, or a piece of music [no words]. Rather than make this post longer, if that interests I have given you links to the posts where I went over approaches to found poetry. I tried to give you the start of each and if you are still interested then keep moving forward in posts. I have the found poetry running over several days. If you aren’t, for some technological reason I have not thought of, able to access any pages, let me know.

Write and then post so we can read the results.

If you have questions do ask; if you think someone would enjoy this, click on the buttons below.

I shall see you on Thursday for another reader suggested topic: enjambment; Friday for the week’s roundup of prompts; and next Tuesday for…yes, another open prompt. Ta dah! I know! What is with me? Don’t get used to it.

Happy writing all.

 
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Posted by on 28/06/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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Friday Freeforall: Poetry Prompts to Keep You Off the Streets

9:00 a.m. — San Antonio

Hello everyone. Have I told you lately how much I appreciate you all? No? I didn’t think so. Well, I do. Now let’s see what we have to play with this weekend.

We start our going into the weekend with Donna’s Poetry Tow Truck and a prompt that says: For today’s prompt, we are going to use some song lyrics about summer as jumpstarts for new pieces.…. Donna gives us several songs to get us in the mood, as well as possible directions we might take. Head over to the Tow Truck and check out the rest of the prompt.

We sail to Writer’s Island next where the word of the week is threshold. Head to the island to read their definitions, which I found fascinating. This is the penultimate prompt from the island which will be closing down in one week.

The next site is The Sunday Whirl. Visit to see Brenda’s wordle and to read up on how it works, if you wish to post responses. Otherwise, enjoy a weekly wordle, the words of which come from responses to the previous week’s wordle. This week’s is from one poem. Go on over to see what others have done.

We have a new entrant for your delectation: Poetic Bloomings, hosted by Maria Elena Good and Walt Wojtanik, whom many of you know. They have a poetic prompt every Sunday. Visit the site and look it over, read the prompt and the poems by the hosts in response.

The line chosen by Carry on Tuesday is: Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee, from Muhammad Ali. The line is fun, so play with it before going over to the site to see what others have written and for a link to read other quotes from Ali. I have seen several of the responses and enjoyed the writers’ creativity.

Sunday Scribblings’ prompt is: opportunity. And One Single Impression, offers us wind. I noticed that they say in their about: One Single Impression is a community of poets writing and sharing haiku and other poetic forms.You might check out some of the participants’ offerings.

At Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Sunday Snaps’ Susan May James has two photographs ready for you to look at. If you use one, consider submitting your creation to Sunday Snaps: the Stories’  a collection of 52 photos and stories/poems. Susan is finalising submissions for her next book and has posted a deadline. Head to the stories’ link to read up on it.

Whether you like to read them or want to try writing one, this site is the place to play with limericks. I enjoy the whole site more every week. It is plain fun to browse. Go to Mad Kane’s Humor Blog for her Limerick-off Mondays. and a lot more besides.

Jingle Poetry’s ‘Monday Potluck’ offers us Void, Loneliness and Sorrow. Remember to pop by and watch the video with which they accompany their prompts. Next week they are giving us Saints, Monks and Meditation.

Visit Magpie Tales for our other image prompt. The photograph is visually intriguing. You can do a portrait poem, or focus on the included details of the image.

For you alliterists out there, here is ABC Wednesday‘s letter for this week: Did you have some winnings this weekend playing whist?  Maybe you have read Wuthering Heights?  When did you last enjoy a whiskey sour?  Were you watching the US Open golf tournament, all the while wishing you could golf as well as Rory McIlroy?   Do you love the Wookies of Star Wars?  Are you interested in World War I or World War II?   Of course, you can find something on the world wide web!. Go on over to enjoy the rest of the alliteration. The author of the prompt had so much fun with W that we have an essay. Go read it for fun, if you don’t play.

The three words this week for Three Word Wednesday are gag, maintain, and omit. As always, visit them for their definitions. They have a particularly good source. These three words are an interesting pick.

This is part two to last week’s prompt. In that prompt we asked you to stay close and simple, observe and describe. That is now the foundation for the prompt this week. This week we’d like to suggest you move your observations farther out into the world, go out the door, maybe down the road – both physically and as how you relate to your observations. That is how We Write Poems starts its prompt. Head on over and find out what we are to observe and what we are to do with what we observe, this week. It was such fun reading everyone’s contribution to this.

Poets United asks us to: Pick an inanimate object from anywhere and write from its perspective. It could be anything anywhere. Look at the things around you and imagine what poetry they would write. They always have more, to help us choose possible paths, and this week’s suggestions are particularly provocative, so go over and read the rest of the prompt and look at the charming and funny illustrations

For our last prompt we have Scribble & Scatter’s ‘Alpha to Omega Thursdays‘. We should be onto ita this week, but as of post time the word had not been changed, so if you are keeping up with this, head over and track down the latest. I have given you the link to this past week and if you look at the left sidebar you’ll see the Greek letters listed. They are also the links.

That should keep you busy and writing. If you think anyone else would enjoy these, click on the buttons below. If you have questions ask. If you write in response to any of these, both the people whose blogs you visit and I would love to read your responses. So, post!

I shall see you Tuesday for another open prompt, Thursday for a discussion of something I have yet to decide, and next Friday for more of the same. Happy writing, everyone.

 
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Posted by on 24/06/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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Tuesday Tryouts: Poems on Things That are Lost

9:00 a.m. — San Antonio

Hello dear readers. I promised you an open prompt this week, which means you get to choose the form, whether it is free verse, or a more structured form. For those who have been assuming free verse is free: Hah!

While free verse is my usual format, in many ways that choice provides more difficulties, because when I am not choosing a standard form, I do need to consider the structure of the poem. Forms, such as those we have played with in the past few weeks, take a lot of thinking out of the equation, because the form tells us how to structure the poem. We can concentrate on other aspects. With free verse we have to come up with our own structure to support our content, as well as all the other things that make a poem.

Didn’t know you were going to get a mini-lecture thrown in did you? On to the prompt!

LOST

Start by thinking about and then listing all the things you have lost. Leave room for notes with each item. Consider things like a memory, a tooth, keys, a friend, your direction [can be literal or figurative], an opportunity, a close relative. What other things have you lost? Or, in a wider, more abstract view, what has been lost to your generation, or town, or country? Plenty of possibilities.

Next to each loss jot notes on what you remember. Try to include as many concrete and sensory details as you can.

Then, jot notes on any feelings and emotions you associate with each loss.

Pick one from your list of things lost. Decide whether you want to write in free verse or one of the forms we have been playing with or, indeed, a form you like but we haven’t played with yet. Choose the point of view — will the speaker speak in first or third person? The choice affects how the poem comes across, so you might choose one and mentally try the other once you have a draft. Consider whether you wish to include feelings, or just tell the story. Decide on the speaker’s tone: sad, angry, tongue in cheek, humourous…your word choice will support the tone. And, if you don’t remember the whole story, make up whatever you need to convey the story you want to tell.

Write and then post so we can read the results.

If you have questions do ask; if you think someone would enjoy this, click on the buttons below.

I shall see you on Thursday for a reader suggested topic: the poetic inversion; Friday for the week’s roundup of prompts; and next Tuesday for…yes, another open prompt [I know what’s coming down the pike with forms, so I’m lulling you].

Happy writing all.

 
41 Comments

Posted by on 21/06/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing

 

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