Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 192

For today’s prompt, write an interview poem. Maybe it’s an interview for a magazine or TV show. Maybe it’s a job interview. Or something more creative. Who ever or what ever you decide to interview or be interviewed by, have fun poeming!

Here’s my attempt at an interview poem:

“Bartleby on Trial”

With slumped shoulders, the prosecutor
swept both of his hands through his hair
and said, “Let’s try this one more time–
loud enough for the jury to hear–would
you please answer my simple question?”

The witness, a calm man who showed
no emotion, leaned over very carefully
and whispered in a voice so soft an ant
would have trouble understanding his
repeated answer, “I would prefer not to.”


Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer


Learn the secrets of story structure and plot!

Great characters can be developed with a short interview, but they’ll go nowhere without a strong plot and story structure to put them in action. On Thursday, Martha Alderson will lead a live webinar, Secrets of Story Structure & Plot, to cover this storytelling essential. Plus, attendees receive a copy of her book, The Plot Whisperer.

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134 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 192

  1. JRSimmang

    There are only so many questions that can be asked
    before they all start sounding the same,
    plus the art of conversation is dead.
    More or less, it boiled down to a battle of wits
    until all that was left was the charred remains of words
    and sentences.

  2. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    How to Freeze Apples
    by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Hard and red, with just a scab of green flesh between the two
    they fall into my colander basket like miniature bocce balls,
    their sides clinking against the cold steel mesh. Even the
    dog is keeping his distance, no doubt thinking October a
    strange time to be picking apple remnants off nearly bare-armed
    trees, but the growing season has been strangely sporadic
    this year, much like my poetry magazine subscriptions.
    In the distance, a crow sucks on my predicament.

    Later, as I’m hunched over a white porcelain sink, peeler in hand
    stripping October flesh off of Braeburns and Red Delicious,
    I’m perusing clever things I would say if I were being interviewed
    by some big shot magazine, when I get this sudden epiphany and
    it dawns on me just how spiritual the whole process really is ~
    writing poems, preparing apples, metering and measuring,
    getting the cinnamon to lay just so until the kitchen becomes
    like this temple of childhood memories for which my mother’s
    ghost to happily wander about, giggling and peeling apples
    alongside me while I hum this happy interview.

    © 2012 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  3. DanielAri

    I posted this at, but it’s perfect for this prompt, so…

    “this glamorous profession”
        after Patrick Sokas, M.D.

    Bill took an interest in my suit.
    “Where did you get it?”

    I looked at my feet and mumbled.

    “I have one just like it.”

    I glared. “This was my only suit, a mail-order suit.”

    “You probably saw a picture on a model.”

    “It looked good, though it was probably pinned up in back.”

    “You said, ‘I want that suit.’”

    “Actually I said, ‘I can afford that suit.’”

    Bill took away my notebook,
    and he played reporter for a while.

  4. Marcella Franseen

    The Sun and Moon

    I asked the sun, “How is it you glow with
    with such perfect light and warmth?” She
    replied, “Its not what I do so much as what I am,
    a fire can only be light and warmth.”

    I turned to the moon and said, “You are bright,
    but not nearly so bright and warm.” He
    nodded. “It’s not who I am so much
    as what I do. My only light what I reflect of the sun.”

  5. priyajane


    Potential groom for the blossoming grand daughter
    Whispers of hope, filled desserts and rose water
    He was carefully selected by a background Check
     Of Family dynamics, education  and wealth

    She wore her favorite color so bright
    Dressed, with care, and practiced her smile
    Convincing herself that he may be the one
    For this was the way, tradition was run
    A fleeting meeting could decide her fate
    How would she choose this candidate?
    To have and to hold for the rest of her life
    A stranger to marry and be called his wife
    Would the dreams that she dared, be waiting for her?
    Had destiny brought her,  their choreographer?
    A simple Yes or No would decide
    The road she would travel on her journey in life—

    PriyA Jane

  6. Walt Wojtanik


    “Would you mind holding this?” I said
    as my shy and reserved nerve found its footing.
    A satchel, a valise, a leatherette bag
    which held numbers and statistics.
    She didn’t mind.

    “Can I ask you something?” I had
    gotten around to saying, staying within
    myself, and dying to break out
    (while I broke out). “Your eyes and grin,

    are they always so wide and bright?”
    Her answer came in a blinding flash
    with a dash of playfulness tossed in,
    that grin tore down defenses I never knew
    had been constructed. She interjected,

    “Are you always so shy?” I stammered,
    no answer forthcoming as I stood drumming
    fingers upon my leg. I begged for courage
    and in a flourish of stars and trumpets
    she took my hand. She could have left me standing

    but she was assured and commanding
    and stealing my heart. And I seemed
    emotionally retarded. But, it was the start
    of our time, and I’m grateful for that.
    I held onto my hat in our whirlwind.

    Over the years we had traversed, she was nursed
    through anorexic fits, suicidal tendencies
    and dependencies on me to enable her.
    She was unstable, sure, and I was driven away.
    To this day I have regrets. But one never forgets

    the first love; the first question in life’s interview.
    “I don’t know who you are, but would you mind holding this?
    She held her bony hand extended; emaciated and
    deflated in physique and spirit. As I hear it,
    her first “attempt” was after I had gone.

    And for as strong as she made me, she couldn’t
    persuade me to aid in her self destruction.
    For her to get stronger, I could no longer enable.
    She had to find “stable” without me.
    Who once came to celebrate me, she had come to hate me.

    “Who holds life’s answers?” I asked after we were
    reunited when they found her cancer. Her second bout
    (the first, without me) and I could see anorexia was beaten,
    but this new malady was eating her inside-out, and I doubt
    I would have known if she hadn’t held out her hand.

    She had found philosophy and a calm demeanor.
    I never did mean her harm and her charm came from
    the day I learned her name. And for the same reasons
    she returned. I had burned into her soul and any control
    she had over illness came from the stillness it gave her.

    “What can I do?” I asked, as if it could save her,
    but all she wanted was to savor every waking moment,
    despite the torment that ravaged her being, we were
    seeing our lives for what they were. Forever joined at the
    lip. “There is nothing you can do, but love. There is nothing

    you can say that you haven’t already. Stay steady.
    Be the man I always knew you would be; who would stand
    by me as I made my exit. Be expressive with the words
    you have found within you. It knew you had it in you,
    you just needed that kick.” Although she was sick, she continued.

    Her once sinewy arms were bony and slight,
    and how she would fight to keep her light from extinguishing.
    Her eyes and smile, her most distinguishing features, found their power
    for the brief time that remained. It was as if to ingrain themselves
    in my brain. And she whispered, “Write your ass off”.

    One last time, a hand extended, bent at the elbow
    bruised below from the pokes and needles, tears filled us,
    and she trusted that I’d know what to do. And she said
    the words that came to her, “Would you mind holding this?”
    And she glanced at her emaciated body.

    Gingerly (befitting her auburn locks) I wrapped trembling arms
    around her fragile frame. There came a moan and a sigh.
    Butterfly eyes and a cough. I held her loosely as she hung
    onto my neck for dear life. In a whisper the last query came.
    “Can I ask you something?” Deep inhalation. “Do you love me?”

    In clutching tears I breathed, “YES!” and she closed her eyes.
    The interview was over; there were no follow-up questions.
    She had all her answers.

  7. Connie Peters

    An Interview with Daniel

    This is Curi Ositiy with
    Time Traveler News
    here with Daniel
    in Babylon, Sixth Century.
    Daniel, how did it feel
    to be thrown into the lion’s den?

    I was worried more for the king.
    He was tricked into signing the order
    to not pray to God for thirty days,
    which led to my sentence of death,
    and he was greatly distressed.

    Weren’t you afraid?

    Yes, but I knew God would either protect me
    or take me to be with Him.
    My emotions just had to catch up.

    Tell me what it was like facing hungry lions?

    Dark, stinky and I was hungry, too.
    The officials didn’t plan for a last meal,
    since I was supposed to be it.

    What was it like when you realized
    the lions wouldn’t hurt you?

    Kind of nice.
    Have you ever heard lions purr?
    Lulled me right to sleep.
    And they made for comfy pillows.

    And when they freed you, what was that like?

    A relief but it was also tragic
    since the men who framed me
    and their families
    were thrown into the den.
    They died before they hit bottom.
    It’s not a sound I’ll soon forget.

    Terrible! What would you like to say
    to those who are listening?

    This is for future people, correct?

    Yes, it’s airing in 2012.

    I’ll echo my good friend King Darius,
    “Worship the living God,
    the eternal ruler.
    He saves, rescues, and
    performs astounding miracles
    in heaven and on earth.”

    He saved me from the power of the lions.

    Thank you Daniel. Remarkable story.
    Next in the news,
    Children in public schools
    forbidden to pray or read Bible stories.

  8. zevd2001


    The Far Out People


    I watch the man’s eyes fumble

    with my file. Reading them, thinking. Did he read

    that I like to play bridge? He looks up at me, then

    goes back to the paper in front of him.

    ” You grew up on coast, no?”

    Yes, I am here. I am the person

    who is supposed to be here. Does he

    do this out of curiosity, the details

    are so . . . he wants to place the facts and figures

    in their proper proportion. Finally a question,

    a smile, something to break the ice,

    “How’s the fishing there, ” he asks. I say

    my Dad and I went fishing

    on a lake, that

    my grandfather had a cottage. He lived there.

    The man says he grew up

    in that neck of the woods . . .

    I come here looking for work and

    this guy wants my life story. Waiting

    for the punch line we pass the time

    with stories . . .

    The man gets up, “Looking forward

    to see you here,” handing me a fistful of forms.

    “Fill this out, and come back

    tomorrow. Welcome aboard,” the man says.

  9. tunesmiff

    (c) 2012 – G. Smith
    Yes, Ma’ am, I’ve been looking for work,
    For more than ninety days;
    And yes, Ma’ am, I’ll take anything,
    Provided that it pays.
    Yes, Ma’ am, given the choice of these,
    I’d rather be doing that,
    But I’m a Jack-of-all-trades,
    Used to wearing many hats.

    No, Ma’ am, I’m not a smoker,
    And I’ve never been arrested.
    No, Ma’ am, I do not take drugs,
    And I know that I’ll be tested.
    No, Ma’ am, I never missed a day,
    At the job I had before;
    The reason that they let me go
    Was they had to close their doors.

    Does she know how hard it is,
    Coming here with hat in hand?
    And I know that what I do does not
    Define me as a man.
    At least that’s what they tell me,
    But they’re not here in my shoes.
    I wonder: if they were, just
    How well they would do.

    Yes, Ma’ am, I can start next week,
    Tomorrow would be better.
    Yes, Ma’ am, I understand,
    I’ll be looking for your letter.
    Thank you, Ma’ am, I appreciate
    All the time you’ve taken;
    But if you think I’ve come to beg,
    I’m afraid you are mistaken

    Does she know how hard it is,
    Coming here with hat in hand?
    And I know that what I do does not
    Define me as a man.
    At least that’s what they tell me,
    But their not here in my shoes.
    I wonder: if they were, just
    How well they would do.

  10. Bruce Niedt

    Interview with a Metaphor

    Q: Why do you think you’re so popular?
    A: Because I am the sunflower to the honeybee.
    I am the smell of rain that ends the drought.
    I am the walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth.

    Q: Aren’t you a little full of yourself?
    A: No, not at all.
    When a writer’s river of ink is flowing,
    and he rides it in creativity’s boat,
    I am the sail turned into the wind of language.
    It’s just my job.

    Q: But what do you say to those who believe
    that metaphors are overused?
    A: Can there be too many sunsets?
    Did Mozart write too much music?
    Can there be too much air to breathe?

    Q: But can’t a simile sometimes be just as effective?
    A: The word “as” is the crutch of the weak-minded,
    the badge of the aphorism, the flag-bearer of weak analogies.

    Q: Isn’t that a bit harsh?
    A: No, harsh is a pair of sandpaper briefs.

    Q: Thank you for your time.
    A: My pleasure. You are the call of curiosity
    in the jungle of knowledge.

  11. claudsy

    Haven’t time yet to read all these marvelous offerings on the altar of poetry, but I will. This is the one I created and the one which I neglected to post here yesterday.

    Spider: “Come Right In”

    He watched their eyes,
    Tells of unconscious intent.
    They had come to him
    Hats in hands, ready to deal.
    “Mr. M, we’ve a proposition,”
    Said the frontman in blue.
    My stare flustered, I knew,
    Causing fidgets and hesitations.

    “We come to talk expansion,”
    Said the brother in red.
    “Expansion of the next year’s crops,”
    Came the qualification.

    I smile; imitation rattler.
    “Expansion’s good, except when it’s not.
    Clearing throat, I reply, smoothing
    The way toward the bank’s financial gain.

    “Are you buying or merely leasing ground,
    And how much expansion are you talking?”
    I watched the look pass between them.
    My hand pressed The Button to the right.
    “B. Elza, would you bring a full
    Set of loan papers in, please.”
    To the boys, “We should get these taken care of
    Without delay, don’t you think, gentlemen?”

  12. Jane Shlensky


    No, I didn’t know him, sir,
    but I knew his Pa, as crafty
    a man as you ever knew—
    could build anything
    and make it work too.

    Yes, of course, everyone’s heard
    the stories of a monster
    roaming his tunnels for miles,
    even heard the bellowing
    underground during our dinners,

    but we steer clear. I didn’t know
    the boy, though once I saw him
    when he was small, working
    alongside his Pa, an eager child,
    his father’s hope.

    I didn’t know him, but I saw him
    fall as if he were plucked from the sky.
    Wish I’d seen him rise,
    but there I was, back to the plow,
    leaned into a mule’s behind.

    I got this tingling in my crown, a pinch,
    as if some god were staring down at me.
    That happens plenty in these parts—
    some neighbor’s girl, suddenly claimed,
    touched by a god, they say.

    Anyhow, I looked up just there,
    as he plummeted into view,
    all frail of flight and amazed,
    his white legs gently peddling
    the wind as if he swam through air,

    and then the sea opened to him
    and those giant wings buoyed him
    for a bit, long enough to see
    something circle above, to hear
    keening like an eagle’s, to feel

    the power of escape burning through
    his veins, melting a father’s heart.
    Thank you, sir, I’m glad my words paint
    the scene for you. Some think farmers
    too obtuse to notice things, but we are

    forever searching the skies for a cloud,
    a breeze, a miracle, any distraction
    from the earth’s endless labyrinth of toils,
    always seeking an escape, however brief.
    It draws us nigh to whatever gods there be.

    Still, I don’t envy you your search, sir,
    for truth in a maze of myth and witness.
    But tell me, was there any news about the father?
    Are you at liberty
    to say?

  13. cstewart


    When I asked her what she wanted
    She said strong, iced tea.
    When I invited her to expand on that she said
    No sugar, No milk, just lemon.
    When I asked her how she got into this business,
    She said it started with her elementary school
    reading fetish.
    I coaxed her to explain the reason she always wore
    The color blue,
    She said, the sky, the water, the moon, eyes
    Of my family – ancestor worship, I guess.
    I asked her to say which she liked better, art
    Or the writing.
    She did not talk, she made gestures that indicated
    They were the same disparate story.

    Cynthia Stewart

  14. Sara McNulty

    Robert, I just love yours!

    What She Did Not Say (An interview poem)

    I never wanted to work
    on Wall Street, contaminate
    myself with greed
    and heed MBAs
    twenty years younger
    than me, who want to be
    revered, obeyed,
    and atop the ladder, fast,
    forgetting the past
    people they used to be,
    ideals they held for free.

    What are you doodling
    on that pad as I sit
    here talking too much,
    out of fear, nervous
    that you will actually
    hire me. Oh, I see,
    you are sketching me
    to see how I compare
    with other women
    applicants. Who is fair-
    est of them all,
    to join your click,
    and work for a dick.

    (True Story)

  15. Michele Brenton

    Rub out and start again.

    “You did what now?
    How many people?
    You are kidding me right?
    Stop there for a moment while I take this in.
    This is going to need some time for me to digest.”

    The shimmering hologrammatic representation of the Great One
    sitting quietly – hands steepled beneath chin,
    eyes half-closed, lips unsmiling and down-turned.

    The holy scientists waited. It had taken many years to reach this point
    a combination of gene manipulation and spacio-time engineering,
    they could wait longer.

    Many hours passed.
    Crowds gathered.
    The image of the Great One was beamed
    across the planet.
    The biggest reality
    on screen ever.

    Eyes opened. Tears fell.
    The lips parted.
    The head thrown back.
    And a scream –
    across the universe,
    across time,
    across humanity,

    And everything folded in on itself
    as the Great One said firmly,
    “Let me try this again,
    I think I can get it right this time.”

  16. seingraham

    Sappho Speaks

    Thank you, yes – this is quite comfortable, very nice thanks
    Yes, I will be more than happy to talk about my work
    What inspired me; how I went about creating much of it
    No – I really do not know what happened to any of them
    All , most, of my poems; it seems they have been lost
    Destroyed? Well – I had heard something
    To that effect but nothing definite
    No – I am sure not – Aphrodite?
    She was far too sweet and loving
    To do anything so nefarious
    The ones left? I believe you have
    All that exist.
    Explain them?
    I am not sure I could
    Or even could I
    That I should…
    Excuse me?
    Why is it important
    That you know
    About my, our
    Love life?

  17. PKP

    Interview with the oft-pictured Nazi who bayonetted a baby

    Now, in the fading light of your years
    Now in long passed time of insanity passed
    Now that infanthood has been returned
    with your rationality and those soft creatures
    deemed then unworthy of life, gurgle and coo


    do you still the sound
    of screams?

  18. PKP

    At the Pearly

    I did not believe
    not really that there
    such an actual gate
    but now here I
    stand a once mortal pearl
    in the light of luminescence
    awaiting my fate

    I lived by the credo
    do unto others and each
    day do something kind
    if it all counts for something
    I would not at all mind

    if on the other hand
    found my papers are lacking
    I probably would not fit in without
    unfair, unwanted, celestial backing

    So I’ll just stand here and
    soak up the sun
    on the sheen of the pearls
    on the gate wait long begun

    Stand here and wait and not
    weave words toward my behalf
    my life my resume cannot be undone
    I’ll pass through or be left here to linger
    eternally listening to your chiding laugh

  19. PKP

    Interview with Hortense

    It was more years than I’d like you to hear
    when first you came into my life Elephant Dear
    I need you to know, I need clearly to say
    that your compassion informs “who” I am today

    Now other girls and boys listen too
    to the wisdom dispensed from the largest
    to the smallest dignified “who”

  20. PKP

    High Powered Interview

    so you say that
    you created it
    not with a shred
    of grandiosity
    but with a simple
    glowing statement
    of fact

    and I ask you but
    one question
    if so
    why then did
    you leave this
    void of gaping
    belief as grand
    as the abyss
    of that canyon
    out US west
    within my core
    where you
    believe you
    should live

  21. Mike Bayles

    Interview to be a Saint

    I know what you’re going to say,
    that maybe I cuss a little too much,
    and you’re going to mention
    that night where I had
    a few too many drinks.

    But let me tell you
    that I’ve lived a good life,
    I’ve given to the poor,
    although I’ve one of them,
    and it’s not easy living with their quirks.

    One leaves the outside door open
    when it’s below zero,
    and when sitting in my apartment
    on days like these
    I could freeze.

    But I haven’t seen him in awhile.

    Another plays his stereo too loud
    and the middle of the night,
    so loud that it shakes my walls,
    and I fall out of bed.

    I haven’t seen him in awhile, either.

    I look at my interviewer in the eyes,
    and he nods at me,
    while a cold draft sweeps past me,
    and a blast of music
    shakes me off the chair.

    I look with amazement
    while the two neighbors walk past me,
    and each offers a nod,
    as each picks up their assignment,
    the ones I had tried to ignore.

    No, my interview says,
    we don’t have any openings now,
    not for anyone who forgets
    to love their neighbors
    in spite of it all,
    and for this reason,
    I’d say you’re not qualified
    to help or to save,
    but try, do try again,
    and come back another day.

  22. Nancy Posey

    Love the Bartleby angle, Robert.

    Position Posted: English Instructor

    They must know they intimidate—
    eight of them, one of you,–
    seated around the oak table,
    pens poised on legal pads,
    the questions ready as they move
    around them room, feigning
    casual, impromptu query rather
    than a planned interrogation.

    With only two, you might decipher
    good cop from bad cop,
    but the panel more resembles
    a jury—not twelve angry men,
    not even peers. Not yet—
    but deceptively mild-mannered
    academic types, on the gray side
    of tenure, more estrogen
    than testosterone.

    You field the standard questions,
    the ones you googled–
    What’s your teaching philosophy?
    Tell us about your education, experience.
    Why, indeed, should we hire you?

    Then out of left field it comes,
    the unanswerable question:
    How do you handle the paper load?

    Your feel your face become cliché—
    deer in the headlights,
    dog watching TV.
    This question has no answer.
    (File in folder with “When did you
    stop beating your wife?
    How many angels can dance
    on the head of a pen?
    Why did the chicken cross the road?)

    You know you can make up
    something vague or false.
    You know better than to tell them
    your wife watches the kids,
    keeping them out of your hair
    on weekends when you have piles
    and piles and piles of essays to mark.
    Instead, you take a deep breath
    and tell the truth, tinged with humor,
    with irony you’d mark with a red pen
    if you read it in an essay:
    I don’t know yet, but if I figure it out
    before you do, I’ll be sure to let you know.

    1. kim

      Very nice. At first the reader thinks that the poem is about the Spanish Inquisition, then is moved into the interview feeling then comes the perfect zinger at the end. Agree with comments about the tension. You can really sense the apprehension and stress of your character. Very well done.

  23. SharoninDallas

    Her heart was gone
    Her body weak
    Her friends so shallow; she was bereft.
    Her love, her soul, her adoring mate
    Had early kept that final date.
    The huge house, the quiet walls,
    The constant alone. Don’t they see?
    “Brother older, help me please?”
    “What time have I for you?” he asked.
    “Haven’t you had your fun? Isn’t your time passed?”
    Brother younger, with perfect wife, perfect children, perfect life.
    “The holiday is coming soon. Don’t you see?
    Please remember, remember to include me.”
    “My life always on the fly is so happily rushing by.
    I know you live mere blocks away. I can’t possibly
    Include you on that day.”
    “Brother middle, will you be the one?”
    “Just exercise. Eat right. Go run

      1. SharoninDallas

        Thank you, RKP (Pearl?) and Marie. Yes, it is true. No, not for me, but for a very dear friend of mine. And how did I manage to post this without the final period and closed quotation mark? Oops!

    1. kim

      This is lovely. I can’t say I enjoyed it because it was touching in a sad way. You succeeded in bringing across the emotion so simply and beautifully. The lilting flow helped to keep the story from sinking into depression. Truly wonderful poem. Thank you for sharing.

  24. taylor graham


    What’s it like, searching with a dog?
    Boulder-hopping down Craven Creek.

    Please explain.
    I say “this way.” She unravels the currents with her nose.

    Does your dog understand English?
    She’s fluent in the languages of breath, water bubbles, the wind’s mantra.

    How can you follow a dog in the dark?
    Just one lightbulb in a forest where every fairytale princess gets lost.

    A lightbulb in the woods?
    Firefly, flashlight. The glow of “El Dorado!” in her eyes.

    Can you trust your dog?
    She’d show me a lost child in a nest of feral cats.

    How do you control a dog ranging the far ridgeline?
    Throw a line of sunlight around her neck.

  25. addi22

    Dream Interview

    I keep dreaming this thing:

    I’m reading and people listen to me,

    So attracted and so mesmerize!

    I’m happy to see it, but still, surprised.

    Every time, the same event,

    But a different crowd.

    Excitement and joy are everywhere

    And everything’s so loud.

    And then, they question me,

    For a magazine interview:

    Again, the same old questions

    But to the ones who ask it’s always new.

    It’s always so fullfilling

    To see your work appreciated!

    So what if I’m only dreaming!

    Let’s do this again!

    Adriana Dascalu

  26. Domino

    Interview With a Human

    Yes, yes, I am one of the rare,
    the few;
    a human.

    In this world of supernatural beings,
    I am a mere, weak
    prized for my blood
    and flesh
    and yes
    It is very difficult being me.

    If only the vampires
    had realized
    how necessary we are
    they wouldn’t have turned
    so many, eaten so many.

    But soon, you all
    will be extinct,
    at least as extinct
    as my race,
    because without us
    to feed on,

    you will all perish.

    I know this sounds harsh, but…

    Wait, what?
    No, you need me…
    Wait! No!

    Diana Terrill Clark

  27. Walt Wojtanik


    We chatted informally, when we would normally be “on the record”. But, she’s been adored from her first exchange. Sometimes the questions get strange a bit, but I must admit, she does it well. Or at least I can tell, by the answers she eeks out. Without a doubt, it is she who puts the bloom into the garden, and poets enhance there with the chance to bare all. There is no stall or hesitation, her interrogation is sweet and complete with poetic asides (sorry, WD). I am prompted to prompt and Marie to the query. And dearie, she does it well.

    Friend I’ve never met
    can get her answers, but she
    hasn’t asked me yet!

    1. Marie Elena

      LOL! Why thank you, dear friend I’ve never met. I think! 😉 And don’t you worry. Your time’s a’comin.

      And thanks so much, Sharon! *blush blush* As I’ve said many times, it is NOT me. It is the incredible folks I interview!

  28. Marie Elena

    interview with a pen

    My favorite job?
    Well, I have worked for kings,
    And presidents.
    I’ve had the privilege of serving
    As an instrument of peace,
    Or wielded as a sword of war.
    Teachers and parents have used me
    To instruct in both love and hatred,
    Sometimes not recognizing which
    Is which.
    My ink has bound contracts –
    Some beneficial; others perilous at best.
    My power has bought, and it has sold.
    My favorite job? I dare not say, but
    This I know:
    My slender figure is most weighty
    In the humble hand
    Of a poet.

    1. kim

      This was wonderfully crafted. I had no idea where this was going until the very last. Clever and witty. Very enjoyable. One of my favorites for this writing prompt. Thank you for sharing.

  29. claudsy

    I have a few comments, which is interesting because I finally got here before the crowd and have the time to actually post one. Sorry, Andrew, but I have to admit that your piece had me laughing so hard that I almost, but not quite mind you, lost what little breakfast I’d already consumed on this fine bright, but cold, autumn morning.

    Walt, I have to admit that when the Dalai Lama comes to our part of the world, may it be soon, that at the ceremonies involved, no interview questions arise like the one you pointed out. One, of course, can only hope, for the world is sometimes a strange place with even stranger people in it.

    And finally, Robert took me back with his Bartleby poem and reminded me of why Melville was an important writer, with his effective portrayal of the character.

    Thank you, gentlemen, for giving me such an entertaining morning break. I pray that I might do as well on this prompt. Have a great and enjoyable day, all..

  30. Imaginalchemy

    “The Applicant”

    Silent judgment as they assess
    The smiling hopeful across the desk.
    They glance at one another, then look back
    As they toss the resume on the towering stack.
    “Your education is good, your demeanor nice,
    But I’m afraid you simply don’t suffice.
    Yes, your work history is impressive
    (although your work ethic seems excessive)
    But you are rather old, so you must be slow,
    We need young and energetic types, you know.
    And you seem compassionate—what we need
    Is someone who will do anything to succeed,
    Crush the competition and make us money.
    You’re simply too empathetic, honey.
    And yes, you have good leadership skills,
    But we need a drone, not someone with a will.
    We don’t want you taking our jobs, right?
    So thank you, no thank you. Have a good night.”
    So the applicant left, even though He knew
    He must forgive them, “for they know not what they do.”

    So if you’re feeling rejected, don’t pout or sob,
    Because even God right now can’t get a job.

    1. kim

      I’m new to this blog and this writers prompt looks like it was fun for everyone. Honestly, your poem is my favorite thus far as I read through them all.
      I’m not very good at rhyming myself, but love rhyming poems. This was well done. I am looking for work myself and this put a big smile on my face and laugh all over me.
      Thank you for this.

  31. Andrew Kreider

    With apologies to some of the very intelligent girls I know who do pageants.

    The interview portion…

    I really believe that the most important
    cultural value of our educational system
    is giving and taking, and giving – in my own
    personal experience, I have had many mentors
    who have shown me by their love of animals
    and children, and geography, just how much
    it means to be a citizen of this great country.
    And organ donors, too. Which is why I support
    livers, and the ability go shopping on Sunday,
    though obviously not for liquor unless you
    are a priest or something, although it’s fine
    for people to believe whatever they want about
    God because that’s what our country is about.
    Which is the reason why I am so passionate
    about the organization I founded last year
    called Be Better Than You Used To Be
    which is all about helping young girls become
    women who know how lucky we are to have
    qualities, and plenty of exercise too. And I
    will continue to devote myself to the cause
    of being better even when I am not being
    watched, like when I am helping at the
    orphanage I go to in Cambodia, or at night.
    And I think that if every school child
    in this amazing country of ours could just
    know a bit more about Cambodia, and
    healthy eating choices, we could reduce
    ignorance and gun violence, although
    I believe it is important to allow people to
    have guns and I am currently learning to
    shoot, but not at people, unless they are
    attacking me and moving very slowly,
    at least that’s what my instructor said
    and he was a Navy SEAL. So you see
    it’s not just for girls – all of us are
    able to be completely amazing if we can
    just have a focus and also dream a lot.
    So in conclusion, I have a dream
    and when the trumpet sounds I want
    to say God Bless America. Thank you.

    1. Imaginalchemy

      LOL, I could hear a Valley Girl voice in my head as I was reading this. And it’s still more intelligent than most of the answers given at Miss America competitions (no offense). I’m going to have to memorize this for a monolgue the next time I audition for theater. 🙂

    2. SharoninDallas

      This is hilarious! I love it! So well done. Yes, I did laugh. But we do have to remember that each of us draws on our own experience, and for some, like pageant girls, it may not be as intense as for others. But some of those girls have a lot more depth than you would ever imagine.

    3. seingraham

      So like Andrew, I am just totally wondering, did you ever do this for real? Cuz – you so could have won- you are like so smart and know just what would totally would have worked as long as like your talent was baton or something totally cool too.

      1. PKP

        I was already laughing literally out loud – not an LOL … when I read Sharon’s comment… Absolutely spot on terrific – and a great follow-up comment … The “Street” doesn’t get any better than when it is like this – fabulous poem and great comments. I am still laughing! Thanks Andrew 🙂

      2. Andrew Kreider

        I’m totally planning on doing a pageant, just as soon as I discover a talent,,,
        As I said in my intro, in the past year I have gotten to know two amazingly talented and downright smart young women who take part in pageants – sort of blew up my stereotypes. Hats off to them… Maybe what I wrote is more a reflection of how I fear I would respond if faced with one of those dreadful interview questions!
        Thanks all for your hilarious responses!

  32. Walt Wojtanik


    You knew this couldn’t end well,
    you could tell by the tact that he took.
    The questions came of an ethereal bent,
    that that would have sent everyone home blessed.
    But, you should have guessed when
    the stuttering Stern stooge was called
    to pose his q-q-q-uery. “Hello Dalai”
    he began. “H-h-h-ow did y-y-y-ou f-f-f-
    f-f-eel w-w-when you f-f-found ow-ow-out
    y-y-you w-w-were G-G-God?”
    Richard Gere rolled his eyes, but
    the Dalai Lama to his surprise
    answered gladly off the top of his head.
    “I felt happy!” is what he said.

      1. Walt Wojtanik

        It should, Pearl. Stern had a character called “Stuttering John” and that exchange actually happened. Gere tried to deflect the question but the Dalai Lama playfully retorted. I truly believe he WAS happy when he found out! 😀 A recounting of a true story.


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