2017 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 8

Time to start week 2 of this challenge! If you’re still poeming along, then you are kicking some serious poetic butt. Let’s keep kicking.

For today’s prompt, write a thing poem. That is, pick an object to write a poem about. Perhaps, it’s an ode to an ice cream scoop or an insult poem for a smart phone. In this world, we are surrounded by so many objects–some large, some small. For one day at least, let’s write about them.


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Here’s my attempt at a Thing Poem:

“My Saucony Cohesion 9’s”

My Saucony Cohesion 9’s
travel with me for miles and miles.
I’m so lucky that they are mine:
My Saucony Cohesion 9’s
pad each step with cushion so fine
that they make both of my feet smile.
My Saucony Cohesion 9’s
travel with me for miles and miles.


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.

He’s run more than 700 miles this year (so far), and more than half of those have been while wearing Saucony Cohesion 9 shoes (on his second pair now). The form he used is the triolet. Click here to learn more about it.

Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.


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345 thoughts on “2017 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 8

    1. ingridbruck

      Heart Health

      My smart phone tracks my steps without asking,
      Heart Health App lives inside the phone’s menu.

      This intruder I didn’t know was there
      shadows me and my phone where ever we go,
      records every step I take, every hill I climb
      and translates distance walked to miles per day.
      I didn’t know it was there, never turned it on
      until a friend showed me the App last month.
      “Don’t buy a FitBit, it’s a waste of money,”
      she counseled and showed me the peeper
      who has transcribed a permanent record
      of my sloth and lack of prowess
      since the moment I bought iPhone 8.

      1. ingridbruck

        ’m trying to stay current and catch up with the same time. Which is very interesting but the prompts help to organize my mind in a direction.

        Day 8. Poem / thing           catching up he said hopefully…………….


        It was worthless
        without electricity
        if the eyes
        stuck to the screen
        could generate electricity
        it’s soft glow would fill
        the dark nights of eternity
        yet it was just another thing
        as we sat around the fire
        its face dark, uncommunicative
        as the desert sang its song
        of silence.  ©

        Michael Peck

  1. bmorrison9


    Couldn’t find a hammer
    to hang my pictures,
    only this baby ballpeen.
    Made for tacks not walls,
    it will have to do.

    I will use the hammer I have
    however small, however
    quiet its voice. Still
    you will hear it
    and tremble.

  2. ToniBee3

    a fling with floss

    it may be I’m a flossing fool
    i pull from the dispensing spool
    a piece of your length and time
    you supple flat mint-strip of mine

    and snap you off the metal lip
    i wrap you ‘round my fingertips
    primed and taut and tightly wound
    i glide you up and slide you down

    ‘gainst and ‘twixt my teeth and gums
    there hides the residual scum
    where caries and sugar-critters
    nibbling grubs and weevils litter

    ‘til you rid them from my spaces
    and for now there are no traces
    of these pestilent gum-biters
    that want to give me gingivitis

  3. Sally Jadlow

    Thing Poem


    Mop stands in the corner
    waiting a waltz across the kitchen floor.
    I glance its way,
    ignore its longing look
    until my feet stick to the floor.
    Then mop gets to glide
    over spilt gravy,
    sail through slimy slop,
    and douse mystery drips
    until the next time
    grimy grunge gags me.

  4. LCaramanna

    A Scarf

    A scarf
    adds panache,
    a flamboyant spirit,
    to an unremarkable suit.
    A scarf
    of vibrant colors,
    woven in fine Italian silk,
    breathes life
    into a classic a-line dress.
    A floral scarf
    thrown jauntily over a shoulder
    welcomes the first spring sunshine,
    jazzes up that old favorite sweater.
    A summer evening scarf,
    lacy and free-flowing
    about a sundress,
    wraps romantic in starlight.
    A scarf of autumn hue,
    cinnamon, ginger, pumpkin,
    paired with jeans and flannel,
    promises a change of season.
    But, a woolen scarf
    pulled close around the neck
    generates practical warmth,
    compliments hat and mittens,
    and is so much more than a mere accessory.

    Lorraine Caramanna

  5. pipersfancy


    I met the potter at a Christmas craft sale,
    watched her deft fingers form things of beauty as she threw pots
    to demonstrate her work upon the wheel. I chose a
    teapot as my own: soft blues and hues of ocean currents—
    reminiscent of voyages not yet taken—with hints of cloud and mist.
    The perfect fit, holding it in my cupped hands,
    it was the first “grown up” purchase I’d ever made,
    a lavish pleasure bought with sixty dollars earned from baby sitting.

    The teapot traveled with me after high school
    through all night study groups in college
    and into marriage and motherhood, always the first item unpacked
    when arriving in a new stage of life.
    But, just like the rest of us, it could not survive our relationship.
    I remember watching Darjeeling pool around its shattered pieces
    the day you threw it to the floor in a fit of rage, recognizing in it
    all my shattered dreams.

  6. Domino

    1. a material object without life or consciousness;
    an inanimate object.*

    Evil begins when you begin to treat people as things
    -Terry Pratchett

    One would think another living being
    with thoughts and hopes and dreams
    would not count as a thing.

    One might imagine that despite a person’s innate
    selfishness, we all live inside our heads, after all,
    it would be impossible to imagine another person
    as a thing.

    Yet that seems to be the trouble.
    Too many looking to only serve their own base needs.
    Too many selfishly seeking pleasure or vengeance for themselves
    without imagining for a second what it might be like
    inside the other person’s head,
    the victim’s head.
    What it feels like to be seen as an obstacle
    instead of a person.
    Or what it feels like to be used as an object
    without life or consciousness, an inanimate object.

    A book by Sherri Tepper** imagined the perfect solution,
    given deus ex machina by aliens, of course, but still perfect.
    Whatsoever one inflicts upon another
    returns immediately to the aggressor.
    Punch your wife? You get a black eye.
    Shoot a stranger? Be shot in the gut.
    Bomb a city? Self immolation, with no harm to the city.
    Exactly what religions preach, that what you do unto another
    should be done to you, only that never really happens, does it?

    Because magic doesn’t exist.

    *things. Dictionary.com. Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. http://www.dictionary.com/browse/things (accessed: November 9, 2017).

    ** The Fresco, by Sherri S. Tepper, ©2002, Harper Voyager, publishers.

  7. RJ Clarken

    Ode to a Coffee Mug

    “Gimme some sugar.” ~Coffee Mug

    Words of wisdom, on a coffee mug.
    Google this and you will see
    a cup of brew. It will speak to you!
    Cream and sugar to a high degree.

    For what is a morning sans coffee?
    (‘Though some might prefer hot tea.)
    It will speak to you, this cup of brew,
    with Java, there’s no hyperbole…

    …only liquid comfort in a cup.
    And ceramic mugs which hold
    a cup of brew that will speak to you
    are more worthy than rubies or gold.

    Go anywhere. You will find your mug.
    It is a thing of splendor.
    Your cup of brew? It will speak to you!
    In fact, this should be legal tender.


  8. Misky

    A Crow’s Feast

    in that darkness
    in that silence
    in the simple of the night,
    the topmost branch escaped
    its clutch,

    it fumbled with the wind.
    it fell, it scrambled down
    the rattling air, fell upon
    the apple tree, where
    there upon the ground,

    now apples apples bounce,
    now a hop a hop by
    a lump-of-coal-black crow.
    a feast of fruit, nature gave
    a meal from fortune’s lot.

  9. tunesmiff

    G. Smith
    Over, under, around, and through,
    Seems like the simplest thing to do.

    But through, around, then over, under,
    That’s the way I tend to blunder,

    Making a granny from a tiller’s hitch,
    (And muttering something that rhymes with “stitch”).

    In Scouting days it was so much fun;
    These days I’m the one who comes undone.

  10. rmpWritings

    Sevenling (There’s nothing like…)
    by rmp

    There’s nothing like belting out lyrics,
    feeling as though your lungs have purpose
    while vocal chords vibrate with untapped emotions.

    You can’t ask for more than rhythmic waves
    of musical notes, feeling every nerve unwind
    while weaving frayed edges back together.

    I stand perched atop a narrow rail allowing myself to be swayed by the current of my mood.

  11. cobanionsmith

    13 Ways of Looking at an Apple


    Shiny, mottled apples
    always waiting in a glass bowl,
    keep to themselves mostly.


    Every day at lunch,
    sometimes breakfast and dinner
    too, one crisp apple.


    Never trust a snake
    or a man, Eve said. Sometimes,
    you can’t tell the difference.


    Not that it matters that she knew
    better, my mother still tried
    to grow an apple tree.


    My husband doesn’t care
    for apples unless
    they’re baked in a pie.


    Dignified. Simple.
    Classic lunchbox staple.


    Cezanne’s muse
    and doctor’s bane.


    Conveyor belts must hate
    them. Soft spots betray
    careless cashiers and baggers.


    Bee and Sun’s love child,
    juice dripping down
    my chin.


    Preferred breakfast beverage,
    my boys consume probably
    thousands of pounds a year.


    Know which stores
    have the best
    at the best prices.


    Like coconut to Summer,
    Fall means fake
    apple everything.


    Dignified until
    you reach its core
    like the rest of us.

    Courtney O’Banion Smith

  12. Alphabet Architect

    Dreams and Thiings

    Things are not what they seem.
    All that is gold doesn’t glitter.
    But that’s the thing-
    It seldom matters,
    Because all that glitters
    Isn’t gold either.
    And a thing isn’t beautiful
    Because it lasts
    But because it grabs you
    Refusing to let go
    Like a thing possessed
    Of nothing less than stardust
    In your half-blind eyes.
    A thing of beauty lasts forever
    Unless it’s a thing of the past;
    And things of the past
    Are memories made
    Here or there or sometimes
    In your meandering mind
    That cuts and pastes
    Bits and pieces
    Calling it a masterpiece
    When it is neither
    Glitter nor gold
    But moon dust.
    And I could tell you
    A thing or two about dreams
    Made of moon dust.

  13. seingraham


    It is tiny, but it is mighty
    in so many ways –
    My daughter gave me this
    itty-bitty bling-fist on a chain,
    for my birthday this year.
    Called such because even
    though it’s a clenched brass
    power fist, the kind we
    raise in the air to proclaim
    everything from: feminists
    rule, to, black power, to
    “yes!” for just about anything,
    it sports a chip of amethyst
    on the ring-finger in honour
    of February, my birthday month
    -that’s the bling on the fist-.
    I love it for so many reasons,
    not the least of which is that
    my girl wears one too.

  14. Pat Walsh

    the last shirt
    by Patrick J. Walsh

    there are rack of shirts
    in the closet where
    unspent days are stored

    the ones with buttons
    and sharp collars
    ready themselves
    for days with photos

    some with short sleeves
    anticipate a cooling
    breath of evening
    after days of bright light

    and nearest the far wall
    one waits for the day
    when it will be finally worn

  15. lsteadly

    Cup of Tea

    what would happen
    of I could not reach for you
    in the morning before the sun
    or in late afternoon
    when my body fades
    or even just before bed
    to drum up dreams

    I put the teapot there-
    on the burner,
    await the rattle and hum
    before the whistle shrieks
    away whatever tension
    lays about

    and when I share you
    with a friend, how I love
    that you warm our hands,
    settle our thoughts,
    blush our faces
    while you steep

    1. MET

      I love this… my mother put a cup of hot tea with milk (mostly milk) in my cup when I was about three years old… all of us kids had a cup of hot tea with breakfast… and my best friend and I one year for Christmas gave each other tea cups and tea and we smiled at how much tea was a part of our friendship… very good

  16. Sara McNulty

    My Coffee Mug

    On white china background, in farmyard scene,
    are roosters rendered, and sketched in between
    leaves and flowers. This coffee mug has style.
    Wide-handle hugs fingers, the bowl–caffeine.

    This mug is a precious gift from dear friend.
    Twice each day I fill with Pacific Blend.
    As I sip coffee, lost in reverie,
    I smile and think of her, my dear girlfriend.

    1. MET

      Coffee is a favorite drink for me these days…. and I have a couple of favorite mugs… unfortunately I broke the mug that had colors of the sky at twilight…tried to convince a potter to make a similar one…but they would not… I have mugs from many places…

  17. tunesmiff

    G. Smith
    It’s just a thing,
    Like a red wheelbarrow,
    Or a chicken wing.
    It’s just a thing;
    Like a piece of string,
    Orna bow and arrow.
    It’s just a thing,
    Like a red wheelbarrow.

    1. MET

      my first marriage proposal came when I was five from a younger man of four who told me that he would marry me whether I was ugly or pretty when we got grown up… sadly we moved and I lost touch with him…

  18. MET

    My Green Notebook

    Genealogy, I have found
    Is a rabbit hole
    With unending tunnels
    And sometimes
    I feel like Alice
    I have wandered
    Into a strange reality;
    I have yet to see
    Light at that proverbial tunnel.
    The green notebook
    Carries the names of my ancestors;
    But unseen is the frustration
    Of a mystery that cannot be solved….
    Especially that one,
    My cousin Edgar will know
    The tunnel with the landslide
    Blocking the way to the light.
    I keep chipping away….
    Maybe this lead
    Will clear the landslide.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    November 8, 2017

      1. MET

        I have found some crazy things… I am related to the Landrums…they are a big family and one of invented the method of grafting pecan trees which is used still today… and they also did pottery and so they studied Chinese glazing which did not use lead which most potters did( this is about the era between the revolutionary war and the Civil war.) and are credited with saving many lives… people used to use three food high pottery jars to pickle things in…and one of them owned Dave the Slave… he was a doctor… and actually was on the side of the Union but did not free his slaves because during that time they could be at risk of slave traders selling freed men and women… But he had a secret press in Columbia, SC to keep the union sympathizers updated..After the Civil War… Dave … remained to work as a potter… today his face jugs bring huge amounts of money…. but in Virginia… before the revolutionary war… one of them was a tax collector for the British and he was murdered by one of the colonist who was for a revolution… he went on trial and was not convicted… His son murdered the man who killed his father and fled to his relatives in SC.. and he was brought back for trial and was not convicted for murdering the man but was convicted for stealing the horse and was hanged……19 members of that generation for the colonies in the revolutionary war…those stories are fun… and if you have roots deep in the south which I do…. you will find an ancestor who owned slaves…. you just hope that when you find them that they would have felt regret for it…. it is just a fact of life… I can’t undo what they did… but the south is complicated…

  19. robinamelia

    The Line

    I wanted to write of a tangible object:
    a matchbook, for instance. It held so much promise.
    We collected them from restaurants
    and even when we gave up smoking, lit candles, incense…

    but I have been transfixed by a line,
    imprisoned by an image, that moves
    across a screen. It marks progress by changing
    from faint gray to black.

    At first the line filled in so quickly, cheerfully
    crossing the screen from left to right
    but then it grew slower and slower
    stopping with just a microscopic point to go.

    I realize this is Zeno’s paradox: keep cutting the distance
    in half and you’ll never get to the finish line:
    the goal gets nearer but a unit half the length
    of the previous length descends into microscopic infinity.

    I cannot move or leave the house.
    Without my phone? I could be attacked by brigands
    and have no one to call for help. It’s happened before:
    flat tires, snow banks (no, we have no snow yet but)

    I’m trapped. By a line.

  20. Nancy Posey

    One thing after another

    We gave away your father’s chair,
    the range the we replaced,
    your mother’s sewing machine,
    a tuba that sat in the attic, unplayed,
    for years. We send old roller skates
    home with the grandchildren,
    unwilling to risk falls. Old stereos,
    a dozen Southern Living cookbooks,
    decades of National Geographic
    we hauled to Goodwill.

    Why then, do I keep the keys
    to cars sold long ago, to doors
    in other towns? That button
    in my top drawer I meant to sew
    back on the duvet cover sifted
    to the bottom of my sock drawer.
    Though you need only one shoe horn,
    we keep five strewn throughout
    the house. I have the dorm room
    number from one of our boys,
    more petty larceny than souvenir.
    Each thing, by itself, fits in my hand.
    En masse, they fill the house.

    1. MET

      I love this poem… and I have thought of painting the keys I have found gold or silver and link them with ribbon to put on a christmas tree but then I don’t put one up… three cats and christmas tree would be asking for a disaster…

  21. grcran

    crazy little thing

    this thing called love, it ain’t no thing
    illuminates one’s wedding ring
    warms up a parent’s soothing hug
    won’t stay down in a hole that’s dug
    it flows out strong, sprung from all hearts
    the deepest well around these parts
    it has no notes yet makes one sing
    it’s no thing, still, it’s everything

    gpr crane

    1. grcran

      hey… thanks for the comments… and i thought everyone would know, and maybe everyone did, but i guess i should acknowledge the poem is a riff off of the Queen song, written by Freddie Mercury in 1980… and thanks again, rusty

  22. Holly

    Reality distortion field

    No magician’s cloak for me
    black turtleneck and jeans suffice
    to clothe my different thinking.
    Simple is harder than complex.
    Just any shape of box won’t do.
    It needs insanely great effects
    to urge end users on to take
    a bite from fruit of knowledge.
    Presto! The world
    in the palm of your hand!
    They smile, content for now,
    until the day, Voilà! I let them
    see the elegance of what
    comes next.


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