Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 423

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Little (blank);” replace the blank with a new word or phrase; make the new phrase the title of your poem; and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “Little Ghost,” “Little Drummer Boy,” and “Little Do You Know.” Okay, those are all song titles, but you get the idea.


Order the Poet’s Market!

The 2018 Poet’s Market, edited by Robert Lee Brewer, includes hundreds of poetry markets, including listings for poetry publications, publishers, contests, and more! With names, contact information, and submission tips, poets can find the right markets for their poetry and achieve more publication success than ever before.

In addition to the listings, there are articles on the craft, business, and promotion of poetry–so that poets can learn the ins and outs of writing poetry and seeking publication. Plus, it includes a one-year subscription to the poetry-related information on All in all, it’s the best resource for poets looking to secure publication.

Click to continue.


Here’s my attempt at a Little Blank Poem:

“Little Snow”

All it takes is a little snow
and Atlanta traffic can’t go
to work or school, even to play–
little snow makes a big snow day.


Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). After spending the first 30 years of his life in Ohio, he still gets tickled that Georgia shuts down for a light dusting of snow and cold weather.

Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.


Find more poetic posts here:

You might also like:

84 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 423

  1. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Cassini Orbiter
    by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    Little booster rocket
    cruising the hoods in space
    as if it had a God-given-right to,
    performing sophisticated scientific studies
    of dust, plasma, and magnetic fields
    –mapping and photographing
    –mapping and photographing
    alien real estate on Jupiter and Saturn
    for the corporate vultures back home
    ready to lay claim and begin divvying
    it all up like cosmic sheet cake
    while in the next quadrant, others likewise
    perform sophisticated scientific studies
    of dust, plasma, and magnetic fields
    –mapping and photographing
    –mapping and photographing
    our little corner of the universe
    as their own cosmic sheet cake.

    Damn pink-skins.

    © 2018 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  2. Karen

    Little Gathering

    Snowflake so tiny
    has a hunch
    why not gather
    in a bunch
    dust the rooftops
    and the trees
    flow with the wind
    follow the breeze
    dance in the moonlight
    until morning brings
    a warming sunshine
    welcoming spring
    a song of rhyme
    no snowman sings

  3. PKP

    A Little Visit

    not as in short
    but as dimin-
    utive.. as in
    dimming – yep
    it’s been
    a while – a long
    not a little while
    since strolling
    this street,
    once tripped daily
    familiar faces,
    footsteps, fairy
    dust dances,
    jousts, jokes
    flops, flips, and
    flames – written
    and read –
    funny the way
    time wanders-
    one, for far
    more than
    a little – blank

  4. deringer1

    LITTLE BIT OF HEAVEN (haiku sonnet)

    blue inviting skies
    blue clear water in the lake
    and warm sand for toes

    a valley fragrant
    in spring with cherry blossoms,
    ripe fruit in summer

    mountains all around
    protective of the beauty
    and the evergreens

    everyone a friend
    there, neighbors knowing neighbors
    children feeling safe

    a paradise in mem’ry
    changed now, but not forgotten

  5. Connie Peters

    Little Helper

    A lady at my church
    introduced me to a visitor
    with the description,
    “one of our little helpers.”

    I pictured myself with pointed ears,
    long stocking cap
    and bells on my toes
    and I wanted to say
    “You’re littler than I am.”

    But I just smiled
    and greeted the newcomer.

    Little words can bring big feelings.

  6. SarahLeaSales

    Little Things (That Make Life Good)

    Chocolate milk moustaches & the sound a straw makes when you’ve sucked it good to the last drop
    The chocolate nugget at the bottom of a Drumstick sundae cone
    Waking up to the aromas of bacon & coffee
    Paper newspapers & excursions to the bookstore
    The smell of matches after they’ve been struck, birthday candles after they’ve been blown out
    The experience of ripping paper off a present rather than pulling it out of a bag
    Front doors with glass that let the light in, open windows on a nice day
    Non-committal sweaters (i.e. not pullovers) & clothes without zippers
    The non-committal semicolon, the amazing em-dash, & the cute little ampersand
    Clever epitaphs & witty puns
    2 spaces after a period
    Cursive writing & typewriter font
    Whiteboards for practical use, chalkboards for decorative
    Long, luxurious lavender bubble baths
    Lady Stetson & Prell
    Non-sitting cardio machines
    Roller skates you can strap to your existing shoe
    Real bicycles that take you places
    Mint-green Mini Coopers
    TV shows that aren’t set in Chicago, New York, or Los Angeles
    Bright lipstick with shiny lip gloss
    Clothes that don’t have to be dry-cleaned
    No-sew sewing projects
    Truffle making
    Retro kitchens with modern appliances
    Willow Tree nativity scenes & Precious Moments snow globes
    The Hallmark Yule log with the dog & cat in front of the fireplace, classic Christmas music playing in the background
    I Love Lucy–an allegory of the American Dream
    Humor, because life is serious

  7. De Jackson

    little miss(es)

    she’s a toddler in a tiara,
    a brand-new-almost-grown-up storm.
    all hormones and horns,
    sweet and spicy
    t(r)ying on masks
    and lies.

    she de
    -spises me today,
    her mama,
    just a little perhaps,
    or a lot. which probably
    means I am doing a good

    i remember four
    -teen, my
    (oh, my)
    self(s), but this is my first
    time ’round this parenting
    bend and i am having trouble
    tyranny and trust,
    space (grace)
    and safety.

    I know I have to let her
    fly, but she is taking my
    heart with her,
    and i still
    need it.


  8. Anthony94

    Little Sugar

    Meanders until it merges
    with Big Sugar, loops around
    mounds that give small towns
    their names, Blue Mound,
    Sugar Mound, Mound City,
    hummocks tossed down
    by giants in the Pleistocene
    Age perhaps, glaciers long
    forgotten, just their melting
    trickles now between the
    banks, sweet music.

  9. rlk67

    Little Fine

    They ask me my opinion,
    but don’t really want to know.
    “Do you like fried beets for dinner, son?”
    “A little fine.” (Means ‘No’.)

    I want to be a teacher.
    “But med school is where you’ll go!”
    says my family of doctors.
    “A little fine.” (Means ‘No’.)

    “We have a lovely girl for you.
    Her name is Mary Jo.”
    I met her once, she’s not for me.
    “A little fine.” (Means ‘No’.)

    I’m a doctor now with kids,
    I love them all no less.
    “But dad, teaching speaks to me!”
    “A little fine.” (Means ‘Yes!’)

  10. mayboy

    Little Kiss & Little Lies
    – K
    Little HI
    Inside lieS
    To the skieS
    Torment of x I
    Liver to the suN
    Endless line of G
    jaws dropped

    no surprise

  11. EllaT

    little fish

    I swallowed a fish
    and it flops to get back out
    presses against my abdomen
    as far as it can stretch
    until I push back
    then it disappears to the middle
    only to start wiggling
    in my lower belly

    at night it dances to music
    I cannot hear
    scuttling to and fro
    until my slow breathing lulls it to sleep

    in the morning
    the fish not fully awake
    lazily flicks every so often
    reminding me it’s still there
    still growing
    and waiting
    for release

  12. Nancy Posey

    Just a little snow

    Just a little snow
    and the terrain loses
    all its sharp edges

    the palette narrows
    to grays and whites

    neighbors follow
    departures and returns
    by tire tracks.

    Just a little bird feed,
    sunflower seed,
    nyger and thistle,
    and birds fly in,
    my back deck
    in all their featured hues.

  13. De Jackson

    little blanket fort

    don’t bother us. we are covered
    in chat and chalk.

    we’re not hiding. we’re abiding
    here in all this fluff and
    pillowed talk and downy den.

    it’s too really loud out there. we want
    only slow moon and these
    purple and turquoise tutus
    and entirely too much

    save your pleas for later.
    we are solving all the problems
    of the whole wide world
    with sparkle markers
    and pixie sticks and
    a smile.

    you might as well take a seat.
    this could take awhile.


  14. taylor graham


    Look, overnight they’ve appeared, a stealth-
    army under leafless oaks; pushed up
    from underground to take over the hillside.
    Fungi – mushrooms, toadstools,
    I can’t tell the difference. I don’t know
    their names. These, like snow-goose eggs
    sunny-side-up – magic of a myco-goose
    that just keeps laying gold-yolk eggs.
    And this one, wide as a dinner plate curled
    at the edges and foamy as meringue
    flambé. And these, puffed brown as popovers.
    What do you think of these iron-gray horse-
    shoes on hooves just waiting to carry a knight
    to battle? And this cluster of tiny pleated
    umbrellas for an elf. Isn’t this beautiful, this
    frilly cup of midnight rain? beautiful
    as mystery working undercover to make
    its own myths.

  15. Nancy Posey

    Little Sister

    By the time
    Little Sister came along,
    Mom and Dad
    had thrown away the book.
    We’d been raised
    on Dr. Spock, force-fed
    scrambled eggs,
    put down to naps
    and bed time
    like clockwork.

    Mom and Dad gave up
    on enforcing her bedtime,
    moving her
    out of her crib
    so she could climb
    into bed when she grew tired.
    They woke her
    on school days
    with a Dr. Pepper
    and a Little Debbie cake.

    For our outings
    they practically used travel agents,
    packing a diaper bag
    as if going on a safari.

    For Little Sister,
    Mom tucked a diaper
    or two into her purse
    alongside the Extra-Strength Excedrin.

    Our baby books
    mark ever milestone,
    first words, first steps,
    first day of school,
    all recorded by Kodak.

    Little Sister has a book too,
    pink and still encased
    in plastic, no date
    of birth or time or weight.
    The only word recorded:
    Felt sharp pain.

  16. grcran

    little ditty

    under this derring do
    within our wedding woo
    we share the whoop-de-loo
    our whoop-de-loo is fine
    we wade into the brine
    bring fish back for to dine
    we watch the whooping cranes
    count sandy hourglass grains
    beach whoop-de-loo refrains
    we clean up take a shower
    smell better than a flower
    relax and feel the power
    i love to be with you
    we pair the whole day through
    and share our whoop-de-loo

    gpr crane

  17. K80thepainter

    Little Buttcheeks

    Little buttcheeks are dainty and hardly a mess
    But because of the lack of cushion, it might cause you distress
    They are easily very concealable
    Although the looks are unappealable
    Embrace your little buttcheeks, for they are part of your genetic build
    You can probably squeeze into tight spaces, if you are moderately skilled

    Little Buttcheeks

  18. taylor graham


    Over coffee – why did we both dream
    cats last night? With 17
    unwanted kittens, you were king
    of Cat Hill. I with a calico
    prescient and proactive. Now
    we prepare for the CT-scan, brain
    as feline self-possessed and quirky as
    Blink our once black cat
    who vanished in blink of owl-flight
    maybe. I understand nothing
    of brain scans. Is this why we both
    dreamed cats? Is this how myth is born?

  19. StoryMom

    Little Bo Peep and
    Little Boy Blue
    Were out visiting one day.

    They said, “Little Miss Muffet
    Get off your tuffet
    And go outside to play

    For the video games
    Of spiders and such
    You can later retrieve

    But childhood fun
    Out in the sun
    Is what makes the best memories.

    Don’t spend your time
    Wasting away
    Your childhood, to be sold.

    Tales of video lands
    Won’t interest your grands
    When you become very old.”

  20. Jrentler

    little starbitz

    is to be expected

    for we all
    be starbitz

    so turn
    the tables
    & spin

    cause the waltz
    don’t stop
    once you drop

    we be perishables
    just strippers & ice cream

    & tho we nova
    apart as we depart

    keep to the beat
    stay on your feet

    for we
    be infinidudeinal

  21. Walter J Wojtanik


    Alive and well and living
    in a hole underground.
    The only sound is that
    of its little feet scampering.
    The late, white rabbit needs pampering
    and time to find his groove.
    He had better move quicker, before
    he gets stuck in a sticky
    wicket. Over near the thicket
    the tea is being served and
    he has swerved into
    the mean queen’s palace.
    He harbors her no malice.
    But, what about Alice? Alice?
    Who the hell is Alice?

  22. Walter J Wojtanik


    Elfin folk play pat-a-cake,
    a tradition passed down
    from little hands to little hands.
    Passing time with elfin rhyme
    sing-a-song of sixpence
    and used as a self-defense,
    they play. They never stray
    from their merriment,
    these scary men of minuscule means.
    Caught in a blur, an inky stain
    where the stinky little buggers
    fester. There they are sequestered
    in their little hovel homes,
    pat-a-caking all day long
    until the cows come.

  23. De Jackson

    little breaths

    she runs one
    just to see the sun smile
    just to find a new and quiet start
    just to spill the beatings of her heart
    to the pavement one slow footpound
    at a time.

    just one.
    just to feel the trees sigh
    just to feel her breath move
    just to watch the slow groove
    of feet with no particular place to go
    but here
                       and here
                                                and here.

    she measures the morning
    in little breaths,
    little deaths
    of worry and fear
    n o t e n o u g h,
    smoothes the roughest edges of her
    self in sweat and sky,
    kisses her past selves good
    leaves them in the dust.


  24. qbit

    Little did I know
    your rocket launch
    of a face –
    blast-off smile,
    up-up-and-away eyes

    Would send me tilted
    into orbit,
    make me your little sputnik –
    beeping and blinking,
    helpless in freefall

  25. Walter J Wojtanik


    I found my true voice years ago, an accidental discovery due to a poetic heart and musical bent. Beatles, Chicago and ol’ Blue Eyes. I could harmonize to “Love Me Do”, and “Do-Be-Do-Be-Do” like The Chairman. Unfortunately, I could never nail the trumpet trills or trombone slides. On occasion, I would display my vocals while in flight on the Thruway with my rendition of “Come Fly With Me”, or breaking my vocal cords with a Helter-Skelter scream. I always dreamed of being up on stage, but at this stage of life, I’d be happy to just keep on driving. Lead vocals not included!

    silence falls and breaks
    calls to pierce the solitude
    songbirds find their voice

  26. PressOn


    I told a little white lie; that’s all I meant to do.
    I told a little white lie. That’s all I meant to do,
    and I sure was surprised at how my little lie grew.

    My momma done told me that lyin’ ain’t proper.
    Yeah, my momma done told me that lyin’ ain’t proper,
    if you do it, she told me, you’ll wind up with a whopper.

    I told a fib to my sweetie, and she whopped me, but good.
    Oh, I told a fib to my sweetie, and she whopped me, but good,
    `cause the fib that I told her ain’t what she understood.

    Well, I told her I was workin’ and we couldn’t go out.
    Yeah, I told her I was workin’ and we couldn’t go out,
    but I went to the movies and gallivanted about

    and while I was carousin’, I met a cute gal.
    Oh, while I was carousin’, I met a cute gal
    who was oohin’ and pantin’, and wanted to pal.

    Well, I tried to avoid her, tried to walk away.
    Yeah, I tried to avoid her, tried to walk away
    but she stuck to my side like some sun-baked clay.

    Then I saw my sweetie. She was sobbin’ and sighin’.
    Yeah, I saw my sweetie. She was sobbin’ and sighin’.
    “I’ve had enough,” she told me, “I’m sick of your lyin’.”

    Well, I tried to explain but my sweetie wouldn’t buy.
    Yeah, I tried to explain it, but she just wouldn’t buy.
    Instead she replied with her fist in my eye.

    So if you gotta tell lies, you better tell `em just so.
    Yeah, if you gotta tell lies, you better tell `em just so,
    and don’t ever be surprised if your little lies grow.

  27. Eileen S

    Little Willie O’Ree

    Little Willie was a young boy
    from New Brunswick, Canada
    who just wanted to paly hockey.
    He worked hard and played for
    a lot of Canadian minor league teams.
    One day, in January 1958,
    the Boston Bruins needed
    a replacement player for
    someone who was injured.
    It was Willie’s chance to play
    the National Hockey League,
    the dream of every Canadian boy.
    The Bruins were playing the
    Montreal Canadiens in Montreal
    when Willie played his first big league game.
    He never bothered telling anyone
    that he was blind in one eye,
    he just wanted to play hockey.
    The next day, he and the Bruins
    played Montreal again,
    this time in Boston.
    Then he was released from the Bruins
    and played in the minor leagues.
    Is that the end of the story for Willie O’Ree?
    No, Willie played a few more games in the NHL
    but spent most of his career in the minors.
    Willie distinction was being
    the first African Canadian
    to play in the National Hockey League.
    He paved the way for others later on.
    Willie never wanted to be a trailblazer
    He just wanted to play hockey.

  28. candy

    A Little Snow

    we got a little snow
    just a few inches
    a shimmery white landscape
    the plows are plowing
    and children are off
    to school in yellow uses
    as usual
    traffic on my way to
    morning yoga is normal
    you got a little snow
    less than a couple inches
    you can still see the
    green grass
    schools are closed
    children try to make snow angels
    and snowmen are the size of elves
    only essential workers
    are required to make it to work

  29. PowerUnit

    Little Minds

    When little minds attempt big thoughts
    A hiss of righteousness brews
    And prudish smugness wafts
    Through the brittle hive of angry wasps

    We all have our differences
    None of us realize are sturdy walls
    Our limitations etched fast
    On the outside of one-way glass

    Pats on the back should not reinforce
    a bias common man cannot endorse
    A group consensus should not cater
    To an agreement of alma mater

    This should not be a war of ideals
    A thought no sane person can light
    On an age-old candle wick
    Soaked with color-coded rhetoric

  30. Daniel Paicopulos

    Little Birds

    Sitting softly, observing
    the hummingbird highway,,
    in our backyard sky,
    speed freak avians
    zipping and diving,
    not rivals, more contestants
    in a labor to survive.

    Sitting safely, watching
    them feed or die, those
    tiny-hearted birds,
    twenty beats per second,
    Mandevilla bloom
    becomes their arena,
    long beaks dueling for
    one flower, until they
    spy our four-hole feeder,
    competitors no more.

    Tapping quietly, viewing
    the laptop screen
    on my lap,
    variable speed poets
    warping and weaving,
    neatly creating their art,
    not competitors,
    more partners in the
    need to express.
    They write or fade,
    those big-hearted bards,
    one hundred images per hour,
    Poetic Asides their stage,
    longing for what’s due
    their flowing thoughts, yet
    loving each other’s works,
    competitors not at all.

    1. Marie Elena


      So Little Eye Contact

      Cell phones
      disconnected us.


      I went back and forth between “regrettably” and “ironically.” Ironically, my decision was regrettable. 😉

  31. Walter J Wojtanik


    Blessing on you little man,
    your talents are truly in demand,
    and her wish is your command,
    if anyone can, you’re the man.

    It’s not to say the little woman can’t!
    For at times it’s she that wears the pants,
    (or sometimes skorts; sometimes skants)
    or anything that makes her dance!

    Anyone can rule the roost,
    all you need’s a little boost,
    little (wo)man can get real loose,
    especially when they’ve been seduced.

    Blessings on you two who can,
    together strong, you take a stand,
    and give each other a helping hand,
    for if anyone one can, they can.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.