Poetics Serendipity: National Poetry Month

27 Mar

8:17 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to If sung by Petula Clark

Hello, all. Let’s see where we are: four days away from April 1 and the beginning  of a poem a day for many of us. For those who think we are nuts [and those participating are among them], you will have an abundance of prompts throughout the month to play with, try, stash, whatever you wish. The rest of us? Well.

1] Robert Lee Brewer is justifiably excited over what is quite a coup on his part. His Poem-a-Day, aka PAD, takes an interesting twist this year, with guest judges, one for each day of the month. If you head over to his place, you will see a list of the judges. Amazing.

2] Quickly’s will be on tap for the month with her refreshingly bracing style. I’m sending you to her pre-game pep talk.

3] NaPoWriMo is gearing up. They were on my list last year and I used some of their prompts [I had a buffet style: I picked and chose from among all the prompters]. At the moment they are counting down. Today’s post has links to some new poetry sites, one of which will provide your phone with a poem every day. I was excited until I found it’s for iPhones only. I’m excited for them. Really.

4] While the Found Poetry Review’s challenge is a closed one, there is no reason you cannot follow along and select some of their prompts to try. I shall post their prompt each day along with my response. The challenge, as I mentioned previously, is to write with Oulipian constraints and source the poems from our daily newspapers. The link takes you to this blog.

5] From Quillfyre’s comment below: This is the second year that The Poetry Superhighway plans a NaPoWriMo event. Last year I recall some great prompts from them. Here’s the link from the website, which in turn points to a FB page for posting the responses:

If you know of another site participating, let me know and I will add it.

I shall see you tomorrow for the prompt roundup and then not until May for the regular blog postings, but every day for oulipo work.

Happy writing, everyone.


Posted by on 27/03/2014 in exercises, poems, poetry, writing


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18 responses to “Poetics Serendipity: National Poetry Month

  1. b_young

    27/03/2014 at 9:08 am

    Really impressed with Robert’s lineup so far. Scary.
    Yesterday I pulled the poems from my first PAD and had a look. Zounds! Are they ever bad! But better by the end of the month.

    • margo roby

      27/03/2014 at 9:12 am

      I think I gawked at several of them. I may keep my eye on his prompts. Am I right that with this format, we don’t have to respond to each prompt?

      I read through the oulipo prompts yesterday. yikes! I will have plenty of bad stuff. I found it interesting that many of the oprompts are clearly not worried about a poem arising, but trying the constraint. To make things fun, they’ve thrown in a sonnet and a sestina. Those aren’t difficult enough without having to find the lines in a newspaper!

      • b_young

        27/03/2014 at 9:25 am

        As I read it, you’re expected to be writing every day (which you will). Looks like: If you want to be included in the anthology, you paste into the comments and meet the judge. Not just your link. But I’d ask Robert. Pasted, you have no control. If you decide that something’s dreck, too bad.

        • margo roby

          27/03/2014 at 9:30 am

          I will [write every day], but not to Robert’s prompts. I shall ask about that.

          Robert controls the dreck. It has to get by him first before the judge sees it and my poems do nothing for him. I have strong confidence in my writing but one can only be turned down so many times before giving up on a particular source! Still, I’m tempted.

          • b_young

            27/03/2014 at 9:44 am

            I have to combine his prompts with something else. They’re too open to work for me. Quickly’s too open, too. Sorry Joseph isn’t prompting this time. May hit his archives.

            • margo roby

              27/03/2014 at 9:47 am

              Well, that is a reason Robert’s prompts don’t usually work for me. I need Josephian exercises. I think we should chide him. It’s not like he’s doing anything this month :-D.

          • Hannah Gosselin

            27/03/2014 at 5:33 pm

            That’s exactly how I’ve been feeling about the topic as far as being turned down…but this time since there’re other judges and there’s the possibility of being included in a book I will give it my best try again. I’ve been thinking it might be my poeming priority this April and I’ll include as many others as I have time for…I’m supposed to be contributing to Real Toads as much as I can this month too as they’re hosting a PAD as well again.

            Either way, I’m not going to get too attached to the idea of getting picked for this book but the pressure just might be enough to make me sweat a little, (in a good way). 😉 I usually like to combine his prompts, too.

            Happy writing to us all! 🙂

  2. julespaige

    27/03/2014 at 12:21 pm

    I continue to write and post daily so just writing for NaPoWriMo doesn’t send me. And I’ve added a daily haiku meme… Oy. I think I’ll attempt Quickly again. I just can’t wrap my brain around being judged. That’ll all be on top of my favorite weekly prompts. At least combining some of them helps to keep me just a tad sane.

    Have fun to all to whatever floats your boat. Cheers ~Jules


    28/03/2014 at 2:50 am

    Thank you for this roundup. I have put your post onto my favourites bar so that I can do a pick’n mix of prompts. I ducked out of Poetic Asides a while back, as I found there were just too many to read in a lump and I spent too much time scrolling down and not enough time writing. I prefer sites where you simply post a link to the poem, which gives you the chance to tweak a bit.

    I looked at my old Napo files, and reckon my poetry has got worse, not better, in the years since I started. Socks need to be pulled up!

    • margo roby

      28/03/2014 at 9:46 am

      Pull ’em up, ViV!

      The amount of people on almost any prompt site keeps me from posting. I adored wordling but once the group expanded, I was out.

      It always does my heart good to see your face. During April I shall make a point of trying to visit people. I might give myself a limit of a few each day to start, or end the day. I’m grinning as I write that, knowing myself. I said try. I’ll stop by your bistro for a coffee.

      • b_young

        28/03/2014 at 10:58 am

        I’m a rotten communitarian. Get all wrapped up in my own junk and dart into an alley when the rest of the world wants looking at. Bad girl. That’s the reason Miz Q wants us all out there, reading.

        • margo roby

          28/03/2014 at 11:11 am

          Yeh, good luck hauling me out of my cave. I’ll be writing poems, so willy-nilly will be around, but.

          I love the image: you darting down dark alleys, me skulking in a cave.

          • b_young

            28/03/2014 at 11:32 am

            broad-brimmed hats over our eyes, capes furled

            • margo roby

              28/03/2014 at 11:36 am

              Absolutely capes. I hadn’t thought about the hats. Nice.

  4. quillfyre

    01/04/2014 at 3:15 pm

    This is the second year that The Poetry Superhighway plans a NaPoWriMo event. Last year I recall some great prompts from them. Here’s the link from the website, which in turn points to a FB page for posting the responses:


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