2018 April PAD Challenge: Day 2

I hope you had a great first day of poeming. If you missed it, no worries; it’s still easy to catch up! If you did poem yesterday, let’s do it again!

For today’s prompt, write a portrait poem. You can use an actual portrait to write an ekphrastic poem. Or think up an image from real life. Or fake life. Or don’t be so literal; instead of writing a poem that describes a portrait, use the poem to frame a moment or lifestyle or whatever. By the way, how many times did I type “or” in this paragraph?

Remember: As mentioned yesterday, these prompts are just springboards; you have the freedom to jump in any direction you want.

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Re-create Your Poetry!

Revision doesn’t have to be a chore–something that should be done after the excitement of composing the first draft. Rather, it’s an extension of the creation process!

In the 48-minute tutorial video Re-creating Poetry: How to Revise Poems, poets will be inspired with several ways to re-create their poems with the help of seven revision filters that they can turn to again and again.

Click to continue.

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Here’s my attempt at a Portrait Poem:

“evening”

she stands behind her man
with her hands upon his shoulders

he hides his face inside his hands
& she’s looking out a window

his elbows rest
on the table with his dinner

the sunset shadows stretch
across their thoughts concealed

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Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). He loves a good portrait.

Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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387 thoughts on “2018 April PAD Challenge: Day 2

  1. BDP

    “Portrait of a Lighthouse”

    A painting from memory, the signaled, white column branding
    his mind long ago, until he almost lost track
    of how he felt: the rushing water
    breaking around boulders, making them houseboats,
    a trick of foam—huge rocks bobbing—as waves sucked back out,
    leaving large coins of shells and log matchsticks,
    bark stripped and branch collars smoothed to nubs. A landscape
    where he could squint to the horizon and witness trees
    along the moving brightness, fooling himself that the blade of sun-moss
    hid a forest at its edge, and a small town deeply
    shaded, perhaps streets ghosted when people left behind
    their lives and traveled on, floating away. Light is
    much an issue of waves, where information
    rides in and stumbles about
    and, if we’re lucky, curls around us, swishes, avoids the political
    where thought freezes to concrete, not dead exactly, rather, said
    important, staid. But in reality, life’s an ever-shaking canvas—
    bubbles pop into liquid, stones shift, boulders seem to, what-is
    reforms over and over again. He believes the unspoken
    inside of him enters his brush hand. Strokes say—
    behind the ocean roar—hear the click of marsh cattails,
    yet he’s aware that, once drawn, knowledge
    locks, too. That’s why he wants one masterpiece curving
    with the imagined sweep of the Fresnel lens, going,
    coming, calling to the stranded, bestowing a vast can-do
    kind of hope when those lost know they need to make it or else.

    —B Peters

    Endwords from Rick Badot, “Coast Starlight,” Chord.

  2. Brandi Noelle

    Charcoal Sketch

    Lounging on the bed perfectly still
    I heard the scritch-scratch of charcoal
    as it swiftly brushed paper
    creating lines and curves
    sketching my image
    an artist’s muse
    inspired
    portrait
    me

  3. Angie5804

    Little Boy

    I know you like smoked cheddar, but not that weird cheese, Ricotta
    You know every Star Wars characters and Marvel hero
    But you didn’t know your great-grandpa
    Your cow-lick is untamable, your curiosity insataiable
    You are lanky and heavy footed
    You love videos that are silly and reading in bed
    You have a wonderful laugh, but it stays buried inside too often
    When you sleep you sleep hard, then you are up with the sun
    You are the little boy I will always love

  4. AC Leming

    Portrait

    Kintsugi

    Instead of throwing away broken pottery,
    Japanese artisans use precious metals
    copper
    silver
    gold
    to piece them back together.
    They see art in cracks outlined in gold,
    beauty in imperfection.

    My heart could use that kind of epoxy.
    A gentle brush in an artesian’s hand.
    A repair to gleam in soft light.
    My broken pieces transformed.

  5. Angie5804

    I know you like smoked cheddar, but not that weird cheese, Ricotta
    You know every Star Wars characters and Marvel hero
    But you didn’t know your great-grandpa
    Your cow-lick is untameable, your curiosity insatiable
    You are lanky and heavy footed
    You love videos that are silly and reading in bed
    You have a wonderful laugh, but it stays buried too often
    When you sleep you sleep hard, but you are up with the sun
    You are the little boy I will always love

  6. sincerescribe

    Pictures hanging stately on walls
    Open for interpretation
    Remnants of family record
    Tokens of rich conversation
    Realistic, abstract, or both
    Art mode of communication
    Instances of living captured
    Telling stories of vacation
    Sealed memories on a canvas

  7. Sharon Gerger

    I saw your portrait today
    You weren’t so ugly back then
    Your poor skin has seen better days

    You’ve been dead since who knows when
    You’ve spent year haunting me, night and day
    But, I’m not afraid; you’ve become a friend

  8. Mr. Walker

    CR-V

    I, hands on the steering wheel,
    my Ray-Bans on against the glare

    You, sitting beside me,
    Facebooking

    The teenager, texting
    a friend on his iPhone

    The dog, beside him,
    eagerly waiting our arrival

    waiting so patiently
    for the pack leader

    to get us all
    to the dog park

  9. Amy

    A Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman

    careful, there’s a girl attached to that string.
    six years behind her, fifty-four ahead

    scraped knees that bleed happily beneath
    the oak tree. does she dream? does she

    dream of me? not yet, but pull this thread
    and she’s playing at motherhood

    that sweaty sweet hand hold
    crossing the road, baby sister in tow.

    does she know i’ll be born amid the
    tulips and the earthy scent of petrichor?

    just wait a while- she’ll follow on the
    other side of locked bathroom doors

    and half-cocked ideas that put rings
    on fingers and meaningless shouts in

    the mouths that kiss so tenderly.
    she is me. but not quite me because

    she is nine hundred and forty-three
    miles distant and unraveling.

  10. mattmacd

    He’s not there
    anymore.
    With the total lack of distance between
    the two of them,
    he has no choice but to maintain eye contact
    and make the appropriate mouth noises
    that a person would make
    given his situation.
    Does she realize it?
    The lights are on – but no one is home.

  11. Jonsey C.

    “Dans un Café à Paris (Leigh Whipper)”

    Cafe shadows lurk behind
    Demons lurk within
    There, behind the eyes
    In this morning sin
    Life’s different here in Paris
    My black is meant to be
    Still, I must go home
    Bring life to Crooks, to me
    Never stay in the shadows
    Make the shadows set you free

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