NaPoWriMo Prompt 13

By on Apr 13, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off

For day 13 of the NaPoWriMo challenge, “K” is for “Kantan Chamorrita.”  Since “K” is another letter that is light on English poetic terms and forms, today’s form comes from the Chamoru natives of the Mariana Islands. The form refers to a rhyming debate, usually improvised and similar to “battle rapping” or poetry slams. You can approach today’s prompt in multiple ways: Write your own rhyming (or non-rhyming, if you prefer) response to an existing poem. Be sure to link to that poem if you share yours. Or, you could write a dialogue...

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NaPoWriMo Prompt 12

By on Apr 12, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off

So far, we have primarily been following the alphabet to come up with the daily NaPoWriMo prompts. But considering there are 30 days in the month and only 26 letters in the English alphabet, that will not get us through the whole month. Today, let’s revive a long-forgotten English letter, “Thorn.” Representing the “th” sound, it looked more like a “Y.” This is why “ye” is an archaic spelling of “the.” Learn more at this article. Today, use this letter as an inspiration, which you can approach in a number of ways....

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NaPoWriMo Prompt 11

By on Apr 11, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off

For day 11 of the NaPoWriMo challenge, as we follow the alphabet, we reach the letter “J.” There are practically no poetic terms or forms in English that start with “J.” Don’t despair, however. Let me suggest that “J” is for “Joke.” Light verse, or humorous verse, has an enduring charm that can often appeal across age ranges. Many people have introduced their children to poetry through the humorous works of Jack Prelutsky or Shel Silverstein. Even such canonical poets as Alexander Pope used humor frequently and well. Write a poem in any...

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NaPoWriMo Prompt 10

By on Apr 10, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off

Rajasthan, India by Nick Kenrick ( For Day 10 of the NaPoWriMo challenge, in our progress through the alphabet, we’ve reached “I” for “Imaginary.” I’m going to borrow an exercise used by one of my poetry professors in grad school. He asked us to write two paragraphs: one a description of a place we knew very well, and one a description of a place we’d never been. Then we were asked to examine those two paragraphs and see which one was more evocative. Almost without exception, the one about the place we’d...

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NaPoWriMo Prompt 9

By on Apr 9, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off

For day 9 of NaPoWriMo, we’ve reached the letter “H” in the alphabet, for “Hymn.” Traditionally, a hymn is a poem that praises God or the divine, and is often meant to be sung. While the Poetry Foundation page on the form includes some examples from the 17th through 19th centuries, many also consider Emily Dickinson’s poems to be written in hymn form. Consider writing a hymn to less traditional subjects, such as nature or love or something that inspires spiritual feelings. Feel free to share your poem (or a link to your poem) in the...

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NaPoWriMo Prompt 8

By on Apr 8, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off

We’ve reached the letter “G,” and there are very few poetic terms that start with that letter. There is, however, a very interesting form, the “Ghazal.” According to the Poetry Foundation: Originally an Arabic verse form dealing with loss and romantic love, medieval Persian poets embraced the ghazal, eventually making it their own. Consisting of syntactically and grammatically complete couplets, the form also has an intricate rhyme scheme. Each couplet ends on the same word or phrase (the radif), and is preceded by the couplet’s rhyming word (the qafia, which...

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