2017 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 1

Time to start the 10th annual November PAD Chapbook Challenge. Let’s get poeming!

For today’s prompt, write a new day poem. Often, I think of a new day meaning a positive move in a new direction. However, it could be the opposite. Or it could be free of positive or negative connotations; instead, just being different. Or a new day that’s completely the same, I suppose. Looking forward to where everyone takes their new days.


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Here’s my attempt at a New Day Poem:

“& suddenly”

i had no desire for sugar
or processed foods or
anything else that might
taste good but tries to kill me

& i went for a run & lifted
weights & even sit ups
were not impossible & i
thought this is amazing

that i’m becoming this
version of myself that i
always thought i could be
until around midnight

when i gave in & had a snack
that turned into a meal that
transformed into a slide
that i hope someday will end


Robert Lee Brewer

Robert 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.

This is his tenth year of hosting and participating in the November PAD (Poem-A-Day) Chapbook Challenge. He can’t wait to see what everyone creates this month–not only on a day-by-day basis, but when the chapbooks start arriving in December and January. Fun, fun, fun.

Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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280 thoughts on “2017 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 1

    1. ingridbruck

      New Day

      Setting the alarm for twenty minutes,
      mandatory writing time begins,
      my goal to write a poem everyday in November.
      Having a writing friend beside me helps.

      To poem every day, to make each word count,
      I search for the “all” in minimal
      instead of the “mal”,
      the Spanish word for bad.

      Already it’s the sixth day of the challenge
      when I begin writing prompt number one.
      I start the new day with good intentions,
      intent to turn away from everyday bad habits.

  1. bmorrison9

    New Town

    Everywhere I went
    I met someone I knew,
    not just on the street
    or the grocery store
    but in line to vote
    or the jury quiet room.

    I knew several musicians
    in the symphony,
    actors in local theatre.
    I knew writers at readings,
    librarians, mechanics and waiters.
    Even shopkeepers
    were children and grandchildren
    of those I grew up with.

    Here, in this new
    town, four hundred miles
    and five states away,
    I move through the days
    without a greeting
    or familiar face.

    I’ve met four neighbors
    and the mail carrier
    That’s a start.

    some days
    I feel invisible.

  2. Holly

    New day

    Newborn star
    aays my voice on the memo app
    from several months ago.
    I don’t know why.
    Was it Hollywood or astrophysics,
    birth of a baby,
    nascent sea creature,
    or just gazing upward?
    Newborn star.

  3. LCaramanna


    yesterday mistakes
    evening tears
    midnight fears
    cannot lurk in darkness
    lightened by daybreak

    silver shine of morn
    sparks a fire
    insists desire
    cannot lurk in shadows
    of a new day born

    soul strength from within
    kindles the fire
    demands desire
    step into daylight
    with courage to begin

    in revitalized spirit
    to conquer
    each new day

    Lorraine Caramanna

    1. ppfautsch24

      Friday Nights
      Liquid courage on a Friday night stream
      and flow from my cut crystal glass;
      held by chipped nails and my chilled spirit.
      I giggle partly from the bubble bursting memories of our time together, your scent inhaled.
      Heady dreams make me tipsy and do things
      I shouldn’t.
      My languid mood from your full bodied male
      makes for a good day and night.
      By Pamelap

  4. Imelda

    bleeds into today
    like a storm
    that raged through
    the night and was gone by dawn.
    Gone, but for its sad remains.

    A new day
    shows the horizon
    truth stretching
    farther than
    the eyes can see, pain and hope
    and a chance to make things right

  5. Brandi Noelle

    Another day, another failure
    I feel broken beyond repair
    The gloom of depression settles
    I’m swallowed up by my despair
    I cry, I pray, I wonder
    Will this pain never cease?
    Is the throbbing ache of my heart forever
    My soul to never be at peace?
    I’m not alone, I’m loved, I’m comforted
    It is this that holds the demons at bay
    I will rise up from the ashes to fight again
    Tomorrow is a new day

  6. pipersfancy

    1. New Day

    The past is not quite done with me
    as dawn breaks, the silver maple
    holds its leaves in limbo while snow
    pellets swirl across a brittle lawn,
    and images of mother reflected
    in the mirror each morning belie
    the fact she died a decade back.

    I rub sleep from my eyes.

    Meanwhile, the dog sits patiently
    by the front door for her walk.

  7. ToniBee3

    among the blooms

    the new morn approached
    i thank my Lily of the Valleys
    ‘fore my feet hit the floor
    for this sixteen thousand
    seven hundred ninety fourth
    day of me
    planted in His plans
    i’m a redolent bloom
    (at least today)
    among other blooms
    and weeds and seeds
    gwine ‘bout my business
    to customize a sliver
    of this swivel and tilt
    whether through
    sunflower-hours so delicious
    whether through
    stretches of sadiolas
    (once glad)
    either whether or weather
    He props me up
    plump and glistening
    (like how lilies hold dewdrops)
    from light ‘til
    the day evanesces
    i thank Him
    and i smile
    at the cordate moon

  8. AFPrice

    The Day

    the night is dark and the day is done
    mistakes were made and the race not run
    then I sigh and think of a different way
    how I could have changed the entire day

    but I didn’t and now it’s over you see
    so I take a breath and know I am free
    to close my eyes, sing a song or two
    till I wake and start a day – brand new

  9. Erbiage

    I’m up, I’m up
    It’s a new day
    Though the sun
    Is still far away
    I’m up, I’m up
    And I must say
    I’m ready to play
    Something good,
    Something large
    Is on it’s way
    My shirt is blue sky
    My pants are rich dirt

  10. stepstep


    Even though I tell myself
    Tomorrow will be different, Tomorrow
    I’m gonna start all over again
    To reach my goal.

    Even though Tomorrow arrives
    Is my choice different or even better?
    I have the chance to change the outcome
    To make the new day matter.

    Even though Tomorrow is the new day
    New chapters peel away the old,
    Even though the change occurred
    Did the new day conquer all?

  11. angieinspired


    you’ve been thinking
    more than your usual ruts

    and i’ve been thinking
    ’bout that nightmare job

    how the frosty haven’t even been
    issued a death certificate,

    and here you are wanting to change
    my name to Always. Always?

    i’m awoke now. i ain’t dead yet.
    just choking on Al(l)ways

    figuring out all the ways
    i can start over with an ‘A’

  12. Linda Hatton

    Break from the Fast

    Pigeons rock
    on leafless
              branches, bobbing
    like apples, seeking
    sustenance for beaks,
    as hollow, element-
                        ary school,
    Halloween mouths.
    Crows waddle
    then lacerate
    fast food bags,
    teenage rejections
    from dewy concrete,
                in flight
    over donuts,
    feed my need for self-

  13. cassandrascurse

    another day, soon joins the arcs
    of those long gone
    solstice to equinox repeated
    until the circle closes again

    still comfortably dark
    soft jeans, frayed shirt
    and hot coffee
    to take outside

    the tiny owls’
    trilling counterpoint
    a last lovely nocturne
    before the start

    at first light
    the “dawn chorus” swelled
    filling the space
    then ebbed away

    as my familiar broad-winged
    widened a rising gyre
    a crow’s call to arms
    drove him on

    much later, two coyotes
    padded briskly along
    our peopled streets
    from wooded cover to cover

    going cheerfully
    about their bloody business
    as are we all
    yet, I’ll have to say

    they were a new delight
    on a strange new day
    and I’d like to think
    even that old charioteer

    into the workday rhythms
    of fiery hoof beats
    looked down…and smiled too

  14. rmpWritings

    Betwixt Dusk & Dawn
    by rmp

    Every night I listen for
    moon flowers’ stars to unfurl
    wide as their namesake in full bloom
    crickets’ song to conduct
    evening’s awakening beneath sparkling lights
    owls’ wings to christen
    cool winds breathing life within the darkness

    Every night I close my eyes to this music
    where hope shines bright as evening stars
    as one day is ushered to sleep and another
    stretches its arms embracing possibilities.

  15. RJ Clarken

    No Mistakes (Yet)

    “Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?” ― L.M. Montgomery

    And, I smile. Today is a new day
    No mistakes…at least, not yet.
    ‘Though I have hope, it’s a slipp’ry slope,
    but that’s a promise, and not a threat.

    I know there’s something I’ll somehow miss,
    or something big I’ll forget.
    It’s a slipp’ry slope, ‘though I have hope
    so that’s a promise, and not a threat.

    I might break a glass! Say something dumb!
    Already, in a cold sweat.
    ‘Though I have hope, it’s a slipp’ry slope:
    It’s a promise, and not just a threat.

    So here’s to this new day, clear and bright!
    On what fresh hell shall I fret?
    It’s a slipp’ry slope, ‘though I have hope!
    That’s a promise, and not just a threat


  16. Nurit Israeli


    The night just left.

    My bed holds me back
    at the gate of a still empty day.
    I’m suspended between
    my reverie and my schedule.

    A new day is pushing its way in.

    Emerging sunbeams melted away
    my last night’s dreams,
    but I stay put a little bit longer
    savoring the in-between.

    ~ Nurit Israeli

  17. tmilleroftexas

    All Soul’s Day
    by Terry Jude Miller

    it arrives dressed
    in a drenched overcoat
    starless and warm
    as day-old coffee

    a trek through the credits
    of each one‘s life
    call out for notice
    and perhaps a prayer

    of all the souls
    yours is the one
    I wish would speak

    though I know
    what you would say
    about grieving
    and “carrying on”

    more’s the pity

  18. cobanionsmith

    A New Day

    always dawns but never lasts.

    At what point do you decide

    right now is too old,

    too exhausting and should

    be put out of your misery, so

    you look back or forward for better

    than the tired now:

    an escape hatch or bull’s eye,

    a fresh start you lose every time

    you go looking for it?


    A new day waits right here

    at the end of this line.

    Better use it up until

    the every next time–

    you only get so many.

    Courtney O’Banion Smith

  19. Alphabet Architect


    New month
    New day
    Change is in the air
    Misty morning, nippy night
    Call for outerwear
    Jacket, sweater,
    Vest of down
    Umbrella at the ready
    Fresh raked leaves,
    Autumn fires
    Have us feeling heady.

    New order
    New way
    Gather, reap and stow.
    Windows washed, chimney swabbed
    Cobwebs have to go.
    Potatoes, turkey,
    Pumpkin pie
    Soon will grace our table.
    Family huddled
    Will give thanks
    And eat ‘til we’re not able.

  20. seingraham


    What do you believe if you don’t believe what I do?
    She fumbles for the words, tries to put them in order
    Breathes deeply, shakes her head, fights back tears
    I don’t want to fight, she thinks; we don’t have to agree
    But you can’t make me be who you think I should be
    What? What did you say? Nothing, she thinks
    She knows she didn’t say anything aloud – she never
    does, she never will – but she’s going, going, gone
    It’s a new day and she’s not going to stay for this
    one minute longer, she smiles inside, hurries herself
    along, wishes only to be in a new place, for her new her.

  21. Shennon

    Our first breath
    On that first day
    Upon awakening
    Each new day
    Another first breath
    To start the day
    Until the day
    When that first breath
    Is filled with pain
    And beckons death
    Lung functions wane
    Expel our last breath.


  22. Linowen

    November 1: Hangover

    November lumbers in with candy-sugared
    drowsiness, a hangover from the bawl and brawl
    of house to house begging,
    carnival-style ragging,
    with would-be witches and broomsticks.
    ‘Wonder Person,’ side-kicks, and princess dancers
    are memories now, complete with buckets and
    bags in tow collecting fancy-filled sweet-treats.

    November stumbles a bit, stops, and
    staggers, then calls a bronzing breeze to shake the
    world into true wonder.
    The wonder of bare-ing branches, of crisp leaves aloft on
    up-drafts of Jack Frost’s first musings….
    The wonder of Winter waits in the wings of fluffed
    feathers and random, fleeing birdsongs growing
    silent enroute to a southern Somewhere.

    November will recover.
    Soon a growing gratitude wrapped in
    seasonal celebration will rise like a cathedral’s
    echoing chorus.
    Voices of wind and weather, of bowing heather, of
    mankind’s autumn aria, will rise and swell into
    gray skies hovering above cool earth’s slumber.
    Angels above will play with these melodies and
    send them once again down, blessing the ground,

    but today, November lumbers in with candy-sugared

  23. Sally Jadlow

    New Day

    Where books are listened to
    not read.
    Research is conducted online
    not in books.
    Textbooks are electronic
    not carried in backpacks.
    New ways for old dogs.

    Note: Today I received notice two of my three God’s Little Miracle Books ( I & III) have finally passed inspection and are available for sale on Amazon for audible listening. Truly, a new day for me.

  24. tripoet

    A New Day

    If I were to tell you…
    If you were to hear me say…
    “The world’s caving in around me.”
    My only chance?–
    Please offer me a brand new day.

    I’d wake up and see the angels
    who’ll protect each step I’d take.
    The morning light, oh it wants to guide me.
    My only chance?
    Help with decisions I make.

    It’s not easy being an addict.
    I’m not proud of the life I lead
    where morning seems as dark as nightfall.
    My only chance?
    Can’t you see? A new day is what I need.

  25. MHR

    title: it all starts at midnight

    my resolution was previously made at midnight
    when the moonlight was a shower
    & the time was the knob
    when you turn it left …
    it all begins to wash away to be replaced
    by a hazy sunrise at let’s say 5:38
    when you turn it right …
    you’re brought back to where I said i’d do this poem thing.

  26. tunesmiff

    G. Smith (BMI)
    There’s a new day dawning,
    The dark of night will fade;
    A new day dawning,
    No need to be afraid.
    The sun will chase the shadows,
    The skies will dance in blue;
    There’s a new day dawning,
    All because of you.

    There’s a new day dawning,
    The morning star will shine;
    A new day dawning,
    I am yours and you are mine.
    The golden rays of sunlight,
    Sparkle off the dew;
    There’s a new day dawning,
    All because of you.

    There’s a new day dawning,
    The birds begin their song;
    A new day dawning,
    And it’s where I belong.
    The past is past and this is now,
    A chance to start anew;
    There’s a new day dawning,
    All because of you.

    A new day dawning,
    All because of you.

  27. De Jackson

    Objects in the Rearview Mirror are Farther Than they Appear.

    This poem is a brand
    new day, the quiet silver
    buttoning of my lips.

    the scribbling of my
    heart. The starting
    of something startling,
    the plowing of inky
    crow through fresh
    fallen paper

    This poem knows
    her name, but she’s not
    gonna give it to you. She’s
    buried it deep deep deep
    in sting and song
    and sway, taken its
    syllables away and
    turned them into
    tiny feather dandelion
    kite kisses. She sometimes
    misses the
    point, but she doesn’t
    care a wit. She’s got gravel
    and gravity and grit
    and all kinds of moxie
    to take her on the

    Hold your breath. Look
    deep. She’ll keep you guessing,
    stressing your funny feet
    and beating to the tune
    of your own dragon
    drum. Strum
    your fingers
    along her center,
    and you’ll
    find the kind of
    roadmap that
    makes your heart


  28. Julieann

    Break of Dawn

    Night’s blackness covers the earth
    Pierced only by the auto’s headlights
    Black morphs into dark, dark grey
    Just enough to reveal tree top shadows
    Lining the road
    Up ahead, a crack in the blackness appears
    Stretching across the sky
    Just a crack, a tiny crack
    Separating night from day

  29. Sara McNulty

    A Forward Looking Man

    He was saddened by defeats in his life,
    forced to retire from a job he held dear
    early on, with dependent children and wife.
    Injured at the site, his future unclear.

    In ensuing years, several struggles arose.
    He went through divorce; he brought up two children.
    Fought off negativity, as he composed
    poetry, and read. He’s one in a million.

    Love of story, and movies ignited
    an ache to become an actor. Could he?
    Joined a neighborhood theater group, excited
    to make a change in his life, finally.

    Having cared for grandchildren, without leave,
    he’s content now to wear his heart on his sleeve.

  30. tunesmiff

    G. Smith (BMI)
    I get up before sunrise,
    I look in the mirror;
    My hair is a mess;
    My eyes have been clearer.

    I stumble to the kitchen,
    The coffee is waiting;
    Black? Or with sugar?
    I stand here debating.

    And what do you say to a new day?
    To a new start for this old heart?
    Last night is gone,
    Like the nightingale’s song;
    What do you say to a new day?

    I hear you moving,
    Coming downstairs;
    You’re still the answer,
    To all of my prayers.

    As I head out to work,
    You flash me your smile;
    I pause for a kiss,
    And whisper, “After a while.”

    And what do you say to a new day?
    To a new start for this old heart?
    Last night is gone,
    Like the nightingale’s song;
    What do you say to a new day?

    Life is simple,
    Life is grand;
    As long as you’ll,
    Hold my hand.

    And what do you say to a new day?
    To a new start for this old heart?
    Last night is gone,
    Like the nightingale’s song;
    What do you say to a new day?

  31. Angie5804

    Wasn’t sure I’d ever see that light again
    I heard it in her voice today
    Like the curtains drawn back just a little
    The first faint rays on my skin
    The early morning bird song
    The hope of dark days
    The fleeting glimmer of now

  32. taylor graham


    Wind is a soothsayer, whistling blue lines of sky between cloud,
    script no mailman delivers: news adventurous, benevolent,
    financial reports of the season: dividends of leaves.

    Leaves golden and falling, confetti under foot and tires.
    Headlights sparkle when it rains, dead leaves collect in a creekbed
    dry, waiting for rain, its maelstrom of the old year’s litter.

    Dead twigs and branches caught in stormwater above the culvert,
    everything the wind touches, every tiding it delivers –
    will it rain? – its infallible truth song: a new November day.

  33. robinamelia

    A new day: Close your eyes

    Did it always look this bleak?
    Though the trees hold leaves
    some still green like those ancient
    rebels in the hills out of patience
    ready to split, I’m not optimistic.
    My old man sits eating breakfast

    in the dark, training for the final
    lights out; then, I see a video of
    my cousin’s baby taking her first step,
    her mouth widening with success,
    the power of her little body.
    I think, maybe…But I fear for her.

    Madness replicates in variant forms
    through us all. We open our eyes
    and our screens infect our brains:
    cut yourself, drive your car into people.
    So I pray with open eyes fixed
    on a motionless icon, the antidote.

    I hope.

  34. De Jackson

    Putting on a Bright New Dress, in Darkness

    And you ask me what I want this year
    and I try to make this kind and clear,
    just the chance that maybe we’ll find better days.

                                                       – GooGoo Dolls

    I wanted something more
    than all this sallow skin.
    Some semblance of silence
    and song. Some longing
    that something might
    actually fill.

    To day,
    I must move one slumpstep
    at a time, must time myself
    by only breath. Must step
    across a line or two
    to see the rising sun.

    Must walk.
    Then run.


  35. Connie Peters

    When the Wind Stops

    Finishing a huge project
    is like walking against the wind
    and when it stops, I fall over.

    Lord, help me stay standing
    now that it’s over. Help me
    begin this new day with enthusiasm
    in Your strength and guidance.

  36. Jilllyman

    Listening For a New Day

    Packing the car, the borrowed
    thimble-sized camper,
    we journeyed each new
    July to Ely Lake where anger
    was displaced, hacking limbs
    for the nightly bonfire
    and spreading too-hard
    butter on slices of Wonder
    Bread, too delicate
    for such realities not
    to tear.

    I followed
    the Blue Trail on my purple
    Spider bike, pedaling
    around the lake
    seven, eight times,
    hearing the voices
    of the pines.


  37. Nancy Posey

    New Start

    Her tires sling gravel as she spins out of the parking lot,
    leaving the job she hated, the job she needed, tears
    too insistent to fight back. It’s easier to find a job,
    everyone had advised, while you still have a job.
    Now the choice is out of her hands. Terminated,
    such a hateful word, so final. But now all she has
    is hope, that fighting spirit she’s pushed back
    for years, doing what had to be done, for a paycheck,
    benefits, no joy at all. She’d like to drive straight home,
    crawl into bed, and die. Yes, she’s said it out loud
    to no one but herself. But she won’t give them
    the satisfaction of peering into her casket, tutting,
    saying, “It was just a matter of time.” Today
    she’ll start again. Nothing holds her back, not even
    a job that she despised. With nothing else left,
    she will have to try trust. She’ll sit at rock bottom
    just long enough to find the way up. Her son
    will be watching, her daughter too. They need
    to see the lesson she’s always cast into words.
    This time she’ll live it out: We will survive.

  38. headintheclouds87

    New Day

    I live for the new day
    Where the worries of old
    Wither away for good
    In the fresh, freeing air
    Of a morning daring and bold
    With not a care in the world.

    So much stress and strain
    Saps away my frazzled brain
    Setting a course grey and plain,
    My creativity bound, chained
    In a cell where tedium reigns,
    An artist’s idea of true pain.

    But now I find the will to fight,
    Finally allowing me to reignite
    A fire thought lost from sight,
    And bring my true face to light
    At the dawn of mind’s respite
    From ennui’s decaying blight.

  39. Melanie

    my days are shaped
    by sea and sail
    by sun and salt
    and fish and scale

    my hours are full
    of weaving net
    of hurl and haul
    and hard-won sweat

    beneath the moon
    and star flecked sky
    across the sea
    my trade I ply

    He steps aboard
    And shifts my view
    I leave my boat
    Each day now new


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