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Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic Asides Blog

Are you passionate about writing poetry? Check out Robert Lee Brewer’s blog, Poetic Asides. You’ll find poetry prompts, solid tips on writing poetry, interviews with poets, and blog posts highlighting poetic forms like chant, haibun or nonet poems, rispetto, and prose poetry. Sit back, relax, and learn more about the craft of poetry!

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 21

For today’s prompt, write an under the microscope poem. By that, the poem could be about something actually under the microscope–like single-cell organisms or leaves–or it could be more like “being under the microscope” in other people’s eyes. Here’s my attempt: “Blood Work” Every vein, every blood vessel, every electron orbiting its nucleus–I was...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 20

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Let’s (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then write your poem. Example titles might include: “Let’s Fly a Kite,” “Let’s Party,” “Let’s Forget About That Last Poem I Wrote That Was a  Little Too Personal,”...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 19

For today’s prompt, write a life event poem. By life event poem, I mean a poem that takes place at or describes a life event, such as a wedding, birth, death, graduation, etc. There are so many possibilities. Here’s my attempt: “Birthday” Every year, you come; every year, I go and do something stupid...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 18

For today’s prompt, think of a favorite regional cuisine, make that the title of your poem, and then, write the poem. For instance, you may title your poem something like “Brunswick Stew,” “Deep Dish Pizza,” or “Jambalaya,” though the poem doesn’t exactly have to be about food. Here’s my attempt: “Jambalaya” Just add a...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 17

Today is a Two for Tuesday prompt day. Here they are: Write a science fiction poem. Write a fantasy poem. Here’s my attempt: “Invasions” First, robots, then came aliens with ray guns, more robots, and “coming in peace,” though we couldn’t believe them. *****  

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 16

(Thanks to Anders Bylund for pointing out that today’s prompt was not categorized–and not appearing on the Poetic Asides blog! Once again, Anders is a life saver.) For today’s prompt, write a mixed up poem. I guess there are a few ways to come at this poem. Your narrator could have mixed feelings about...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 15

For today’s prompt, use the following five words in your poem: slash, button, mask, strap, and balloon. Use them in any order. Here’s my attempt: “Write/Poem” Clear the balconies and strap your masks on: we have a poem to write slash poem– to carry like a balloon or to wear like a button for...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 14

For today’s prompt, write a doomsday poem. Some of you may remember the world was supposed to end last year (actually twice last year), but that’s nothing new. Every few years there seems to be a new “end of world” prediction (anyone remember Y2K?). In fact, this year had a movie made after it...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 13

Before you jump into today’s prompt, please check out this WD Poetic Form Challenge: Tanka post. Every month or so, I offer a poetic form challenge that usually has a quick turnaround time, but the winning poem and poet is featured in a future issue of Writer’s Digest magazine. And it’s completely free to...

WD Poetic Form Challenge: Tanka

I know it’s crazy to have a challenge in the middle of a challenge, but that’s how I roll sometimes. Why not have a challenge in which the winning poet would be featured in a future issue of Writer’s Digest magazine? Why not, indeed. As you may have guessed from the title of this...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 12

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Something (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write the poem. Example titles might include: “Something New,” “Something Strange,” “Something at the End of This Book,” or “Something Something.” Here’s my attempt: “Something Exceptional” the...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 11

For today’s prompt, pick a season (any season) and make it the title of your poem; then, write your poem. For instance, your poem might be titled “Winter” or “Spring” or “Rabbit Season” (if you have a sense of humor and like Looney Tunes cartoons). Here’s my attempt: “Autumn” even leaves pretend they don’t...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 10

Okay; we’re somehow already a third of the way through April. How did that happen? Today’s “Two-for-Tuesday” prompts are: Write a Forest poem. Write a Tree poem. You can literally write about a forest. Or you can literally write about a tree. Or you can dive right into the metaphor separating the two. Your...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 9

For today’s prompt, write a shady poem. I’ll leave the interpretation of this prompt up to you. It could be a poem that includes shadows and/or shading. It could be about a shady part of town or a shady person. Or well, something else. Here’s my attempt: “Shady spot” Beneath every tree is a...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 8

For today’s prompt, write a rejected poem. Despite some acceptances, many of my poems have been rejected for submission over the years–but that’s not quite what I mean by rejected poem. I’m more interested in poems that work the idea of rejection into the poem somehow. This could take the form of a poet lamenting rejection, though...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 7

Wow! Somehow, we’re already a week into this year’s challenge. That seems impossible, but we’re there. For today’s prompt, write a poem describing a scene in which two or more people interact without speaking. Such moments happen every day. Some are happy; some are sad; and some are angry. Here’s my attempt: “Where It Counts” As...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 6

I hope the challenge has been giving you plenty to write so far. I can’t believe I’m already 6 poems deep into April (and today’s poem is probably my favorite up to this point). For today’s prompt, write a hiding poem. You could be hiding. Someone else could be hiding. Something could be hidden....

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 5

For today’s prompt, write a poem about something before your time. Maybe it’s a certain time in history. Or a type of music. Or a story that was shared by friends or family–before your time. Here’s my attempt: “A Stroll Through Oakland Cemetery” Each mausoleum and tombstone hides away countless stories. From Margaret Mitchell’s...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 4

For today’s prompt, take the phrase, “100% (blank);” replace the blank with a new word or phrase; make the new phrase the title of your poem; and then, write your poem. Example titles might include: “100% Beef,” “100% Cotton,” “100% Awesome,” “100% Etc.” Here’s my attempt: “100% Poem” Start with an incredible metaphor that...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 3

For today’s prompt, there are actually two options, because it’s Tuesday, which means a “Two for Tuesday” prompt. They are: Write an apology poem, or… Write an unapologetic poem. Your choice. You can be sorry–or not. Or write about someone who is sorry–or not. Here’s my attempt: “I Am Really Sorry” I didn’t return...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 2

We got off to a fast start yesterday, which is great! Now, let’s jump into Day 2. (Also, if you left any comments that needed moderated yesterday, they should now be approved.) For today’s prompt, write a visitor poem. The poem can be from the point of view of a visitor–or the people receiving...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 1

And so it begins! Today is the first day of the 5th annual April PAD (Poem-A-Day) Challenge on Poetic Asides. I can’t believe we’re turning five! For today’s prompt, write a communication poem. The communication could be dialogue between two (or more people); a postcard correspondence; a letter; a voicemail; a text message; a series of...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 172

This is the final Wednesday Poetry Prompt before we begin the April PAD Challenge–a poem a day throughout April. Hope to see everyone on April 1! Until then… …this week’s prompt is to write a “one last thing” poem. Maybe the one last thing is writing a poem. Maybe it’s finishing a task. Maybe...

2012 April PAD Challenge: Guidelines

Okay, I’ve been meaning to make this post all month, but I’ve been waiting to get it perfect. There’s no better way to delay a project than trying to make it completely perfect. So I’m just going to post the guidelines the best I can and then make edits as needed. What is the...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 171

I apologize for the late prompt this week, but it’s just been one of those days (and weeks, for that matter). Nothing horrible, just busy. For this week’s prompt, take the phrase “I’ll Believe It When (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem,...