2016 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 16

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Play (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then write the poem. Possible titles include: “Play Nice,” “Play Fair,” “Play Hard,” “Play the Guitar,” etc.


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Here’s my attempt at a Play Blank poem:

“Play the Air Guitar”

Play the air guitar if it helps
you feel better about your life;
dance in front of a mirror if
it will carry you through this night;

don’t let anyone else tell you
how you should move along from here;
someone else’s eye prescription won’t
help your nearsighted vision clear;

play the air guitar if it helps
you feel better about your day;
if the others don’t like it, close
your eyes and continue to play.


roberttwitterimageRobert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of the poetry collection, Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). He edits Poet’s Market and Writer’s Market, in addition to writing a free weekly WritersMarket.com newsletter and a poetry column for Writer’s Digest magazine.

He loves playing the air guitar, especially when he’s listening to bands like Queen, Muse, and 80’s hair bands.

Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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114 thoughts on “2016 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 16

  1. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Play at Love
    by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Play at Love if you must,
    you always were better at pretending
    than I.

    It takes skill and talent,
    and steady nerves to stay the course
    when siphoning investments of the heart.

    Still, I’d rather be
    just a thin chapter of your Life
    than never even a footnote in the margins.

    This way at least
    I’m left with splinter souvenirs
    to dig out of my heart like war shrapnel.

    © 2017 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  2. PSC in CT

    Play Along with me…

    It’s a ball.
    Tag. You’re it.
    Poker, Rummy, Gin, Spit.
    Play dead.
    We can play the piccolo.
    Play me a tune –
    I’ll try to guess.
    Marbles, cards, checkers, chess.
    Hide and Seek.
    (I won’t peek.)
    Hop scotch, Snake, Red Rover
    I’m played out.
    Game over.

  3. Shennon

    Play with a Passion

    Play with a passion
    Commit yourself to
    your instrument,
    your sport,
    your game.

    Let the intensity
    of doing what you love
    flow through your actions
    your behavior,
    your words.

    Dedicate your time
    to improving who you are.
    Be an example for your children,
    for your neighbors,
    for your nation.

    Share this success with the world.
    Breathe deeply and live life fully.
    Play to share joy.
    Play to encourage.
    Play with a passion!


  4. RJ Clarken

    Play Me a Song

    “The only thing better than singing is more singing.” – Ella Fitzgerald

    …and I’m tired and I need a break.
    I’ve had enough; my soul does ache.
    Turn on the radio. A tune begins.
    All sins dissolve. I croon

    along with songs of strength, of peace,
    of unrequited love. Release.
    Subconsciously I think my voice is strong
    (I’m wrong) but I rejoice

    in music. Play for me a song.
    The odds are, I will sing along
    and even if I ‘mondegreen’ I’ll belt
    heartfelt. It’s my routine.

    In car or shower, when alone,
    off-key, out loud, it’s overblown.
    A melody or bright refrain’s the thing.
    I’ll sing. The song remains…

    So, play a song. Play me a song.
    In harmony, we all belong.
    Performance, anthem, rhythm, jam or air.
    That’s where I am. I am.


  5. Valkyri


    Three deck rummy
    when the internet is down:
    laughing at the straights
    and runs (and 200 points
    per hand)
    scatter when the cat
    jumps on the bed
    and decides to play, too.
    25 cards each-
    as our fingers cramp
    from holding so
    many cards in our
    furtive grasps.
    The sly smile on
    your face is priceless.
    You have “a tell,”
    my love.
    You used every decks’
    6 of hearts.
    I better put down
    my 5’s and 7’s.
    You are going out,
    way too soon…

  6. jgweber1221

    Play with Your Fate

    Look for the die
    that has fewer
    than six sides.

    Ask a gypsy
    to collect favors
    for you. If

    you’re willing,
    shed a drop
    or two of blood
    on a crystal ball.

    Keep your hands
    stained and cast
    the bones
    you picked up
    in New Orleans.

    Do not forget
    the impossible way
    your Tarot Cards
    fell, a long line
    of fools leading
    up to a tower.

  7. Sara McNulty

    Play Me Like A Violin

    Play me like a violin string,
    sawing softly back and forth with bow
    your fingers touching skin, awakening
    a lust that liquifies like lava’s flow.

    Sing to me in voice of smoothest honey.
    More precious than a gem, your smile so sunny,
    even in a lambent midnight moon.
    Music–it invades my every cell,

    haunting as a lake with cry of loon.
    Your secret’s safe with me, I’ll never tell.

  8. bethwk

    Play Me for a Fool
    by Beth Weaver-Kreider

    Play me for a fool and I may seek for wisdom
    Play my secret songs and I will hear your voice
    Play the wind against my hair and I might sigh with pleasure
    Play the tired longings of a thousand hearts

    Play the ancient rhythms of the forest
    Play the wild music of the stars
    Play the quiet dreamings of a toad in summer rain
    Play the simple melody of childhood’s happy hours


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