Tag Archives: image prompts

Poem Tryouts: To Sleep, Perchance to Dream

10:52 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to sirens wailing past on Peachtree (I’ll be glad to get settled and back to my music)

Hello, everyone. I hope you are well. I learned a couple of things about traveling and computers. I learned there is no signal approaching, in, and leaving West Plains, Missouri (except the local McDonald’s). I discovered that no matter how much I want something to be, the tech gods really don’t care (Miz Q: I had such fun. I wanted to post those poems, truly I did). And, I learned that learning a new operating system, while wanting something to be and traveling, is not a good idea.

Thus, our image prompt will be a week early, I’ll be here for Thursday’s blog and then the blog will go dark until Tuesday, July 7, for our next prompt. During that time, we will be in DC and Vermont, visiting our kids. If I find (now that I have taken the pressure off) that I am sitting around and the computer works, I may appear. I have found that having the blog and keeping in touch with you all, even on the fly, helps me in this summer of uprooting.

To the images. In keeping with the theme of dreaming, the image that started my thinking on the topic is The Poet Sleeps, by Chang Houg Ahn, which I first saw on The Mag a couple of years ago. I thought the subject of a poet sleeping and then having visions, or being visited by a muse, or dreaming, something my mind will not let go of. I will present two images here and save some for next month if I think they will allow you a different direction on the topic.


The Poet's Sleep by Chang Houg Ahn

The Poet’s Sleep by Chang Houg Ahn

The Kiss of the Muse by Cezanne

The Kiss of the Muse by Cezanne

In case you are tired of dreaming (:-)), you can strike out in the direction of a poet’s inspiration. You can write about where ideas come from — yours, specifically, or in general. You might write about a specific time when a specific poem came to you while sleeping. Or, you can be caught by the sight of the skulls outside of the window and want to write about them. Not a problem. I took care of the dreaming part with the images. You go where your mind wants. You do not have to reference the paintings, in any way, unless you wish to.

See you Thursday for a couple of links.

Happy writing, all.


Posted by on 23/06/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry


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Poetry Freeforall

9:44 a.m. — Atlanta

not listening

In fact, I’m racing. Forgive me if the post sounds like it. We leave in an hour and a half for Asheville, North Carolina, to spend the weekend exploring The Biltmore. I thought we were leaving tomorrow. Hello, everyone. Strap yourselves in and I’ll take you through the last few sites I post regularly on Fridays plus one new site by way of Jules.

We’ll start with the new site. It’s pretty incredible and I look forward to getting to know it. Mindlovemisery’s offerings are rich and deep and plentiful. They give us a new prompt every day. Yes, that’s every day. The prompts include photo challenges, music videos, wordles, fairytale based prompts and short form exercises. A little something for everyone, I’m thinking. Go on over and explore. The blog thoughtfully includes a schedule — check left hand column.

Next up is a much beloved site, The Sunday Whirl. This was the site that taught me I could write a poem in under a month’s time, as we have two days to write and post once the words came in. Brenda, whose site it is, has a particular affinity for choosing words for her wordles.

I remember when I first came across Mad Kane’s Humor Blog, that my thought was to post the site a couple of times only, because of its focused field. I wasn’t sure how many of you would want to write limericks. Then I read the limericks that Madeleine writes, as examples, and realised limerick writing is a higher form of poetry than I had been aware of. I decided I didn’t care if you wanted to write limericks, or not; I was going to give you the opportunity every week.

Magpie Tales is the first image site I posted and while I post others now, remains the best. I say this because my tastes run with the things that appear. It isn’t necessarily that I like the photograph, or art piece, but that I can see the value for a prompt. The choices are brilliant.

The last three I am mashing together because they don’t have a distinct focus like limericks, but they offer solid prompts every week. We have Poetry Jam which always gives us image plus prompt; Light Words, where I seesaw back and forth between Carol’s photographs and photographs plus spark days; and finally Red Wolf Poems which offers, alternatively, wordles and regular prompts. As one of the prompters says: Barbara here. I’ll be one of your off-and-on prompters for the next few months. I’m a little odd, and my prompts are likely to follow suit. If they seem unruly, give them a good talking-to, shake them (gently. there’s not that much holding them together). They’ll work with you if you’re firm.

Yes, okay, there is me. Every Tuesday on Poem Tryouts, I offer a prompt; last Tuesday of the month, it’s an image.

Fun, yes? I look forward to next week when I present the full list as per usual. See you Tuesday for a borrowed prompt; Thursday for links; and Friday for the weekly presentation of prompt sites.

Happy writing, all.


Posted by on 19/09/2014 in exercises, links, poetry


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Poem Tryouts: Some Time With Vincent

9:35 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to Cat Stevens singing Wild World

Let’s see, where are we? Ah. Hello. Tell you what, if a small jaunt to my brother’s in Florida throws me off, I hate to think what the rest of the summer is going to be like! Warning: don’t get old. There. My good deed. Hello, everyone. Today is our image prompt.

While wandering through images, I kept being pulled back to one that the I Require Art group on Facebook posted recently. It is a simple painting with an extraordinary pull.

Garlic Chives Vincent van Gogh

Flower Pot With Garlic Chives
Vincent van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, Post-Impressionism, 1853-1890): Flower Pot with Garlic Chives, 1887. Oil on Canvas, 31.5 x 22 cm. Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands.

I can imagine van Gogh sitting in his studio wondering what to paint next, his eyes passing over various things, idly, as he thinks. The eyes stop, come back to a pot of garlic chives he’s growing. He picks up his brush.

Our creative sparks can come from the damnedest things and we have little control over the stray sparks flying around the central fire. You can take today’s inspiration from the painting in a couple of ways.

1] Take the theme from the title and write about growing something, a specific memory.


2] Do the same thing I imagine van Gogh to have done and glance around you. Don’t look for something, just let your eyes move around the room. When your brain yells:  Go back! you’ll have what you want to paint into a poem.

3] The usual: anything that your mind says it wants to write when you look at this image.

I shall see you Thursday for the summer calendar; Friday for the prompt roundup; and then again in August. I KNOW. Sounds drastic, doesn’t it. You will still ‘see’ me on Tuesdays, in the form of a prompt. But you probably won’t hear from me.

Happy writing, all.

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Posted by on 27/05/2014 in exercises, poetry


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