Poetry Challenge #109-Dictionary Roulette

I love dictionaries! It’s an excellent way to procrastinate . . . and expand one’s vocab—always a good thing. Best, words lead to ideas…and actions! So grab a dictionary and let’s GO!

Here’s mine…show me yours!

Here’s mine…show me yours!

If you don’t have a physical dictionary (Borrow a library copy or Go buy one!!! You should have one!!!), you can use a website such as m-w.com or dictionary.com and look for a list of words of the day.

Poetry Challenge #109

Dictionary Roulette

Yes! You can borrow my dictionary.

Yes! You can borrow my dictionary.

One of my favorite prompts when I get stuck with any writing is to take a dictionary, open to a random page, and write down the first word I see. Sometimes I roll three dice and open to that page. Sometimes I have someone pick a number between 1 and 948 (the number of pages in my favorite dictionary) and then another number between 1 and 68 (the average number of words on the two pages) and I find my word that way.

Using the Close-Your-Eyes-and-Point method, Roll-the-Dice method, Pick-A-Number method, find 5 words. Write a 5-line poem using all 5 words.

Pick 5 Words

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

Don’t think about it too much; just do it.

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge 1260++ days ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. (This one is Cindy’s.) If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #107-Baby, You Can Name My Car!

According to a car nickname website, if you love your car, it’s normal to give it a name. Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang was named for the sound the car made. The Magic Schoolbus was magic and a schoolbus. Scooby-Doo’s Mystery Machine was just that.

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Herbie the Love Bug, Lightning McQueen from Cars, Kit from Knight Rider, and Bandit from Smokey and the Bandit. If you need more reason than that , there’s this: October 2nd is National Name Your Car Day!

Poetry Challenge #107

Baby, You Can Name Your Car!

Think about a car or other mode of transportation you use—EQUAL RIGHTS FOR BIKES!!!

Jot down some words that describe it. What’s its shape? color? size? Does it run well? Make any strange noises? Where does it like to go best? What might you name your car that makes you think of any/all of these things?

An ode is a poem of praise. Let’s write an ode to your car with these restrictions:

 First line: One word—maybe the brand of your car, the model, or just the word “car”.

Second line: Two words—two adjectives describing the car (color, size, # of doors, etc.)

Third line: Three words—What does your car do?

Fourth line: Two words—How does your car make you feel?

Fifth line: One word—Surprise! Your car’s name!

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Get writing! VROOOOOOOOM!

National Name Your Car Playlist:

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge 1260+ days ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. (This one was Cindy’s.) If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #105-Happy Birthday to You-Hoo . . . ever!

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Happy Birthday! Every day is somebody’s birthday! Who do you know who has a birthday coming up soon?

Poetry Challenge #105

Happy Birthday to You-Know-Who!!!!

Can you write a poem to that person telling them why they’re special or what they mean to you?

Work on it until every word is exactly the one you want.

Do you want your poem to rhyme?

Do you want it to have a certain number of syllables on a line?

Is it a list poem or a story? You get to decide.

You can even give it to the person as a birthday gift!

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

Don’t think about it too much; just do it.

Wouldn’t be much of a birthday without a song. Here Goes: YOU SAY IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY by the Beatles

 *Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 1200 days ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #100-One Hundred Reasons Why . . .

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Today marks the 100th 7-Minute Poetry Challenge! A 100-hand round of applause to those of you who’ve tried any—all—of the prompts. (All of the prompts are posted & waiting if you’d like to give them a go, or take a look back.)

Poetry Challenge #100

One Hundred Reasons Why . . .

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If ours were a kindergarten class, we would each have brought a hundred of one ingredient: toothpicks, cotton balls, acorns, M&Ms . . . and mixed them up into some marvelous creation—trail mix, a wreath or maybe a Fruit Loop necklace.  As our focus is poetry, let’s do it with words: 

Using one of the following prompts, write a poem. And if you really want to celebrate create a 100 Word Poem! 

  • 100 Reasons Why I Love __________________

  • 100 Things I Want to Do Before I Grow up

  • If I were making a 100 Memory Necklace it would include__________

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Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

Don’t think about it too much; just do it.

 *Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 1200 days ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #98-Beach Time

Huntington Beach—my  Beach Time  then

Huntington Beach—my Beach Time then

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Summer is in full swing! For some this means CRANK Up the AC! For others it means bugs, or vacation, and for even more it means hot Hot HOT!

When it’s just “Too Darn Hot” there’s one sure fire way I know of to beat the heat: Head to the Beach.

Poetry Challenge #98

Beach Time

Beach Time is way more than just a thing to do. It’s a mindset. And best, it’s way Cool! So let’s get beachy!

Begin by listing whatever comes to mind when you think of a day (or night) at the beach. Here are a few ideas to get you thinking:

Frothy surf, bikinis, surf boards, sand, shells, waves, orange sherbet sunsets, coconut and cocoa butter, Gidget & Jeff aka Moon Doggie

Now you try:

Fine! If “sand in your pants” is what Beach Time means to you, go with it.

Create a poem using a many of those beachy words as you can. Here’s a little theme music to get you in a beachy mood: Da-na-nah-na-nah-nah-na…WiPE OUT!

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

Don’t think about it too much; just do it.

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Got Kids?

Get ROAR! a delightful new (free) magazine for kids featuring Poetry Lab, poetry prompts co-created by us*, just for kids.

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 3 years ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #96: Hot Diggity Dog!

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Hot Diggity Dog! It’s National Hot Dog Day! July 17th)! An entire day officially dedicated to gobbling hot dogs. This is your chance, you can fire up the BBQ, grill up a mess of fat/calorie/nitrate packed hot dogs, nestle them in buttery toasted buns, slather them with tasty toppings and gobble away or you can take the challenge (or both):

Poetry Challenge #96

Hot Diggity-Dog

In honor of National Hot Dog Day, let’s write a concrete poem. Concrete poems are words arranged in a shape to give extra meaning to the subject of the poem. Maybe the words form the branches of a tree or letters drip down the page to show rain. Sometimes there’s a surprise hidden in repeated words like the marshmallow in the concrete poem below created by Cindy*.

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For this one step grab an old-school writing implement (aka pencil, marker, pen). Unless you’re a “Cindy”, it’s harder to create a concrete poem on a device. Begin by visualizing a hot dog. Now, to turn it into a concrete poem you can:

  • Sketch the outline of a hot dog and fill it by writing hot dog hot dog hot dog over and over and over . . . until you are fed up with writing hot dog.

  • Or, fill your hot dog outline with a poem about hot dogs or a hot dog memory.

  •  Or, draw a hot dog with words associated with hot dogs.

  •  Or, use letters as Cindy did by using hot dog part words to create an image. Use other words to dress up your hot dog. Do you like ketchup? Mustard? Onions? Chili? Sweet relish? Marshmallows?

Grab Your Marker

Get Set

Hog-Diggity Draw! (I do relish a good concrete poem…with mustard.)

Got Kids? Get ROAR! a delightful new (free) magazine for kids featuring Poetry Lab, poetry prompts co-created by us*, just for kids.

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 3 years ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #94-Freak the Mighty Fireworks

Fireworks!!!

In the book Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick, Max and Freak attend the Fourth of July celebration and Max is amazed at what Freak knows.

Magnesium!” (Freak) shouts as the white sparkles glitter down over the pond. “Potassium chlorate!” as the shells go womp-womp-womp and everybody goes oooooh. “Potassium nitrate! Sulphur! Aluminum!” And after a burst of hot red fire in the sky, Freak tugs my hair and screams, “Copper! That’s copper powder combusting with oxygen!
— pg. 32-33
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Poetry Challenge #94

Freak the Mighty Fireworks

In honor of Independence Day, try writing a poem that includes fireworks—either your description of them or their chemical names. Let your words burst on the page!

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

Don’t think about it too much; just do it.

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 3 years ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. (This one was Cindy’s creation.) If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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Poetry Challenge #92: This Plum is Too Ripe . . .

All of us is sorry for or about something. (If you’re not, then lucky you!)

My All-Time Favorite Musical—if you’ve never seen it, you should be sorry.

Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones drew on this uniquely human need* to apologize in a song about two neighbors who are great friends until they tear down a wall in the longest running Off-Broadway, sometimes on Broadway musicals of all times The Fantastiks. Here’s a snippet:

“This Plum is too Ripe!”

“Sorry.”

“You’re standing in MY Rose Garden!”

“Sorry.

And now, with no further apologies, on to our prompt:

Poetry Challenge #92

Who’s Sorry Now?

For this prompt, list things you are sorry for.  (Your list can be as long or as short as need be.) Select one or several items that are related from that list and write a poem about it.

Finish the poem with a positive spin by suggesting ways you can, or might apologize. Or do it better next time . . .

* “Uniquely” in that I don’t imagine whale apologize for combing up krill, or cheetah apologize for mowing down gazelle, but maybe they do . . . if so: Sorry!

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

No Apologies, No excuses—Just do it!

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Song for Inspiration: Who’s Sorry Now as sung by Miss Patsy Cline—Of course!

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 3 years ago. We now take turns creating our own prompts to share with you. If you join us in the 7-Minute Poetry Challenge let us know by posting the title, a note, or if you want, the whole poem in the comments.

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