2013 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 2

What’s more challenging than taking that first step? Taking a second step. Let’s keep November going.

For today’s prompt, write a “news of the day” poem. The poem should use some sort of recent news event as a springboard. It can be a news story from today (this morning), but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, you could even go “old school” and find news stories from archived sources–like the “news of the day” from 1936 (to pick a random year).

Here’s my attempt at a “news of the day” poem:

“Des Moines”

After he drove away in her minivan
with a 10-inch knife, she told her family
how he was acting “extremely paranoid.”

Her family called the police, who found him
quick enough in the minivan. Officers
attempted a felony stop, but he would

not roll down his window and ignored commands.
Then, he fled at high speed before completely
leaving the road. He jumped out and ran northwest

through houses before circling back and being
arrested. Police discovered a glass pipe
for smoking meth in his pocket. Earlier

that day, he beat a woman with a hammer.


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Robert Lee Brewer

Robert Lee Brewer

Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems, a collection of poems about love, forgiveness, and modern life. The inspiration for today’s poem came from an article he found in the Des Moines Register (click here to read). Robert is married to the poet Tammy Foster Brewer, who helps him keep track of their five little poets (four boys and one princess). Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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185 thoughts on “2013 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 2

  1. alanasherman

    Finally found the right way to do this one. Apologies to Billy Collins
    #2 news of the day

    Blue Norther

    I wish I hadn’t read the headlines:
    20 first-graders shot,
    killed as as their teacher.
    read Harry The Dirty Dog
    or wrote letters and numbers
    on the blackboard.
    I couldn’t help but remember,
    as I stood on the porch with my cup of coffee,
    the other children starving (always) somewhere,
    ones forced to become boy soldiers
    in some far away ( always) war.
    It could have been
    an unencumbered morning
    looking out over the fields.
    I could enjoy the deer under the apple tree,
    dark red and heavy fruit weighing branches down,
    appreciate the silky milkweed fluff
    aloft against what’s left of yesterday’s Blue Norther.
    An unsullied view, the sun, just a blood-orange
    brush stroke of light behind the trees,
    a jay moving from branch to branch arguing with me
    until it disappears into the woods.
    Are we not allowed to feel a little sorry for ourselves?


  2. thesimplevoice

    Here comes one a little late for this prompt:

    Mr. Stark

    Coach has fallen!
    Consciousness lost along
    the sidelines…

    He’s okay they say!
    It’s ‘only’ or ‘just’ a mini-stroke…
    Yet this is

    The second coach
    to be hospitalized
    in as many days…

    And that’s okay?

    “100+ hours must continue,”
    The coach of a team up North shares,
    “That’s just the game.”

    When work causes damage
    to the well-being,
    is it truly okay?

    Stark reality of a multi-billion $ industry…


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