Poetry Challenge #82-Diamond in the Rough

 In the same way diamonds—the “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” gems/rocks/stones— come in many shapes, colors and sizes, diamante poems can be about anything.

Poetry Challenge #83

Diamond In the Rough

A Diamante is a diamond-shaped poem, simple as that. Diamante poems begin with a one word or syllable line. Each subsequent line grows longer by one than the previous line. The longest line is the mid-point of the poem. From there, the lines decrease by one until reaching the last one word line. The shortest Diamante has three lines of one syllable words.

Here’s a Diamante Frame if you prefer structure.

Here’s a Diamante Frame if you prefer structure.

One

Two words

One

Write a diamond-shaped Diamante about something you value.  

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 1100-ish 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 #81 Don't Bother Checking Twice

Santa still snoozing at some sunny warm spa, recovering after the busy holiday season. So, while he’s otherwise occupied, no need to bother about checking twice—unless it’s to be sure you have ink/lead in your writing implement of choice—thus clearing the way for this prompt:

Poetry Challenge #81

Make a List

Although at first glance you might not notice, soooo many poems are list poems: Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s “How do I Love Thee”, Billy Collins’ “Bread and Knife,” Shel Silverstein’s “Eighteen Flavors” to name a few.

In a list poem, you can list things you like (animals, colors, kinds of cars, playground games), signs of a season, tasks you have to do, items in a category, or what you’re going to do today.

Once you have your list, play with the order.

Choose better words that sound the same (maybe rhyme, or use alliteration).

Can you make the poem sound like it has an ending? 

Try writing a list poem. What are your plans for the day today? Or use one of the ideas above.

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 1100-ish 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 #79-Fibonacci Awakening

Hurrah! It’s spring! Take a close look at the way the leaves on a plant and petals on a flower grow. Notice how they often grow in a pattern: One in the center; next row 2; third row 3; fourth row 5; fifth row 8 and so on. This pattern, which allows each leaf/petal to have maximum exposure to light and moisture while maintaining a tidy spiral pattern, called is the Golden Ratio, is the Fibonacci Sequence in action! Pure poetry, right! Which leads naturally to today’s prompt:

Fibonacci Sequencing Succulent

Fibonacci Sequencing Succulent

Poetry Challenge #79

Fibonacci Awakening

Number sequences are fun ways to create a form for a poem in that they pose a puzzle without too many rules. You could write a poem with using your phone number, birthday or another important date to determine the number of words or syllables on each line. For instance, this year the first day of spring is March 20th or 3202019 which would be kind of weird or maybe fun as the zeros could be stanza breaks. Get mathematical and write a poem based on the first six digits of pi: 314159, or have some spring fun with Fibonacci.

A Fibonacci sequence begins with 0 and 1. Each number is the sum of the two previous numbers. The third number would be 0+1=1. The fourth number is 1+1=2. And so on.

Write a poem matching the number of syllables or words on each line with the first six numbers in the Fibonacci sequence: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8.

In celebration of Spring Awakening, let the theme of your poem be Springish!

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

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

When you finish step outside and find the Fibonacci Busting out all over!

If the Fibonacci has you fired up for More MATH! Here’s a fab Math Challenge game!

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 1050 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 #77-Heave-Ho! Chant-She-Blows!

Sing-Alongs are always challenging—and sometimes embarrassing—even for me. (And those of you who know me, know I love to sing—badly.) The worst is when someone sticks a microphone in my face and I don’t know the words. That’s when I resort to the trusty mumble-mumble-murmer-murmer— la-di-dah-daaaaaaaa

My Best Friend’s Wedding  Classic!

My Best Friend’s Wedding Classic!

Songwriters who like audiences who sing-along— pirate ship captives & those wanting tips, for example—make singing along easier by writing song with repeated refrains—the more often repeated the better. Which brings me to today’s prompt.

Poetry Challenge #77

Heave-Ho! Chant-She-Blows!

“The chant poem is about as old as poetry itself,” writes Robert Lee Brewer in his Oct. 23, 2012 post. “Chant poems simply incorporate repetitive lines that form a sort of chant. Each line can repeat [as they do in Blues’ songs], or every other line [as in a Sea Shanty].” Sailors sang shanties as they rowed or heaved on ropes to keep everyone working at the same pace. It’s believed “Shanty” is a morphism of “chanty” meaning both the type of song and a name for the sailor who leads the singing. By way of an example, below is a Chant Poem Cindy created.  

Snow fell this morning, soft and white and cold,
I was thinking of our bench in Central Park today.

I liked it more before I got so old,
I was thinking of our bench in Central Park today.

I left the city a long time ago,
I was thinking of our bench in Central Park today.

Now I hear sounds of birds—the caws of crows,
I was thinking of our bench in Central Park today.
— --Cindy Faughnan

Follow these three easy steps to create your own Chant Poem—Or “Shanty” if you will! 

  1. Find a headline in a newspaper or magazine that you like the sound of. That will be your chant.

  2. Write a four line rhyming poem where the first 2 lines rhyme and the last 2. AABB

  3. Insert the chant between each line of your rhyming poem and you have a chant poem.

“They know a song will help the job along…”

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 1042 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 #75-Anagram

bananagrams.jpg

Have you played a game where you’re given some letters and you have to see how many words you can make out of them? Bananagram and Scrabble are two family favorites. For today’s prompt, let’s start there and push it further.

Poetry Challenge #75

Anagram Poetry

For today’s poem, begin with a title. Then, create a poem from words you can make by rearranging the letters in the title. You might want to spend a few minutes listing words ala an anagram game before you start writing. You can come up with your own title or use one from the list below:

A Walk in the Garden

Birds Fly over My House

The Bus is Late--Again

Snow Falls in Silent Forests

Here’s Cindy’s attempt:

The Last Time I Went to Town

The last time
I went to town,
the lawn was mown.
I lost a shoe,
the steam was mean.
It went to
a test to see what the mist meant.
Now was the time to stow meat low.
In the lost mantle, I settle.

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 1030 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 #72-World Read Aloud Day

Happy World Read Aloud Day!

Poetry Challenge #72

World Read Aloud Day

Let’s celebrate in style. For today’s prompt, instead of taking 7 minutes to write a poem, let’s read poems aloud. Grab a collection of poems, click over to one of the poetry links below, or if you’re feeling truly brave, flip back through your notebook and reread some of the poems you’ve written. Then, take a deep breath and read—aloud! To someone or something else. After all, poetry is best shared!

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start Reading!

(Be warned: You just might get carried away!)

World Read Aloud Day Links:

  1. LitWorld.org

  2. Famous Poems & Poets

  3. Poem Hunters

  4. International Poetry Digest

  5. The Writer’s Almanac NPR

  6. Where The Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than a thousand fifteen 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 #70-Noises On!

For the last poetry challenge we explored the Sound of Silence, this time, let’s crank up the volume by focusing on noise. 

Poetry Challenge #70

Noises On!

trolley.jpg

Visualize an event, a moment, an incident—either real or imagined. Now, close your eyes and listen to the sound of significant movements and/or actions happening in that moment. What sounds do you hear? Heart beats, water dripping, footsteps, maybe bells . . .

Write a poem using these sounds. Try establishing a rhythm by repeating the sound a few times in each line followed or preceded by what is making the sound. Some hugely successful songs use sounds in this way. For example, in The Trolley Song sung notably by Judy Garland in the movie Meet Me in St. Louis sounds are used to describe the first moment Ester meets John:

Clang, clang, clang went the trolley
Ding, ding, ding went the bell
Zing, zing, zing went my heart strings
From the moment I saw him I fell

Chug, chug, chug went the motor
Bump, bump, bump went the brake
Thump, thump, thump went my heart strings
When he smiled I could feel the car shake
— The Trolley Song by Hugh Martin & Ralph Blane
Tarantella.jpg

And in one of the all-time greatest stick-in-your-head songs That’s Amore! sung notably by Dean Martin jingly sounds are what make us what to sing and dance along:

Bells will ring ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting-a-ling-a-ling
And you’ll sing “Vita bella”
Hearts will play tippy-tippy-tay, tippy-tippy-tay
Like a gay tarantella
— That’s Amore! written by Jack Brooks & Harry Warren

If you have your list of sounds, but you’re stuck for a way in, use one of these songs as a model for your poem (that’s what I did.)

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

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

Noises On! Playlist:

That’s Amore! written by Jack Brooks & Harry Warren

The Trolley Song by Hugh Martin & Ralph Blane

BTW: If you are wondering where the usual links are, my resolution is to stop promoting compensation-free downloading. Please download from your fav buying spot.

drum.jpeg

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge more than 1000 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 #68-For Old Time’s Sake

Happy first 7-Minute Poetry Challenge of the New Year!

Did you sing Auld Lang Syne on New Years? Or maybe watched/heard it sung in scores of movies including, It’s A Wonderful Life, Charlie Chaplin’s The Goldrush, Harry Met Sally, Meet Me in St. Louis, Out of Africa, or, naturally, the movie New Year’s Eve?

If “yes,” then the first stanza and chorus of that iconic song is familiar—although you probably don’t actually “know” the words. According to a CNN report I googled (to be sure I had the words correct) “just 3% in the United Kingdom know the words (42% of millennials have no clue).” For the record:

Auld Lang Syne* penned by Robert Burns in 1788

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And never brought to mind?

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And auld lang syne.

CHORUS

For auld lang syne, my jo,

For auld lang syne.

We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,

For auld lang syne.

*Note not “old land sign.”

Those words “Auld Lang Syne” literally meaning “old long since,” are commonly translated as “days gone by” or “old time’s sake.” The song is basicallty a call to share “a cup o’ kindness.” The “kindness” in Burns cup is believed to be firewater, but that’s not necessarily the case.

Poetry Challenge #68

For Old Time’s Sake

Let’s begin this spanking new year by sharing a cup of kindness in the form of a poem. Think back over the past year and recall a kindness someone gave to you. What was that kindness? How did it make you feel to receive it? With that in mind, fill a cup with a kindness of your own. To whom will you pass it?

Title your poem “Cup of Kindness”

Set the timer for 7 minutes.

Start writing!

Don’t think too much, just do it!

Happy 2019.jpg

More about the song

More movies featuring Auld Lang Syne

The CNN 2018 article

*Cindy Faughnan and I began this 7-Minute Poetry Challenge about 990 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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