Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 441

For today’s prompt, write a notice poem. A notice could be a warning about something. Or it could just be an informational type of notice. Or perhaps, you just noticed a person, place, or thing for the first time.

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Here’s my attempt at a Notice Poem:

“senryu”

how often do i
take notice of a person’s
eyes over my shoes

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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). For whatever reason, he notices that he usually avoids eye contact with strangers.

Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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77 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 441

  1. taylor graham

    WARNING: WELCOME TO TODAY
    (a found poem)

    We’re engaged in an epic battle,
    the hundred deadliest days in the heart of
    everywhere. Final countdown. It’s hard to talk
    about in the past tense, kind of a rollercoaster,
    a natural phenomenon. Brush fires pushed
    by the wind then it starts to clear, brings the stars
    to their feet. Seize that moment, the future
    of awesome. Hit the road and those slow spots –
    there will be fireworks on the ground
    and in the air for a fraction of what you’d pay:
    a parking garage transformed to a restaurant.
    How do you get human connection out of that?
    It comes standard with the best warranty.
    This is decision day, final days of liquidation.
    Let’s meditate on the digital divide,
    the special kind of feel in a redwood forest.

  2. PressOn

    OBLIVIOUS

    On a cruise to the Isle of Stoat
    some fey bathers just hankered to float,
    but these eaters of lotuses
    missed all the notices
    telling them they’d miss the boat.

    1. HebrewChick7

      Suddenly Suddenly I see the pirade floats hurrying around the corner while hope floats, on a boat sail broken beyond the boarder waiting patiently for all pieces to get in order.
      Thank you my name is Darcell S McRae and if I want to submit a poem Book or any other work where do I submit them thanks again.

  3. Troy DeFrates

    A Nonet Poem

    Weary Is The Child In Us

    Weary is the child in all of us
    It calls out to help us slow down
    Heed your inner voice, hear it
    Listen when it tells you
    Enough you have had
    Rest is now due
    Don’t resist
    Trust her
    True

  4. Troy DeFrates

    A Nonet Poem

    Weary Is The Child In Us

    Weary is the child in all of us
    It calls out to help us slow down
    Heed your inner voice, hear it
    Listen when it tells you
    Enough you have had
    Rest is now due
    Don’t resist
    Trust her
    True

  5. Walter J Wojtanik

    MORE KISSES ON THE BOTTOM

    Dear Walter,

    I’ve noticed you’ve been gone for far too long.
    So I decided to sit right down to write this.
    I miss your smile. And it has been a while
    since we truly shared some quality time.
    I’m staying busy. It has truly been
    a dizzying spring.
    And here’s the thing,
    it’s bummer that we disconnected.
    I suspect you’ve been dejected,
    but I promise we’ll find yourself in time,
    and hopefully soon.
    It’s just that I noticed that you are less
    active than usual. Your casual attitude
    perplexes me, really vexes me.
    Was it something in your head?
    I can understand that a man of words
    can get this absurd frustration that
    his conversation skills have faltered;
    that such words would go unheard,
    sometimes sour like bad curd.
    They can be for the birds,
    as you so clearly have demonstrated
    time and time again!
    You can’t please everyone
    if you can’t please yourself.
    Go back to basics;
    you write what you like, like back in the day.
    Find what it is you have to say. You’ll always
    have a way with words. Use them judiciously.
    Suspiciously view the words of others.
    Those who love you, will feed on your muse
    and choose to peruse you.
    They will choose YOU. Let loose.
    Write when time and life allows.
    And always follow your heart. Start by writing
    a letter to yourself. Give yourself  permission
    to place your words of wit on notice.
    Have a wonderful time. Wish you were here!

    Signed, Walter

    XXX

  6. MargoL

    I noticed your smile.

    I noticed your smile the other day
    how it suddenly filled the room
    as it took away the gloom
    and replaced it with so much
    sunshine, actually
    your smile made my
    day. So keep
    smiling
    babe.

    1. ppfautsch24

      NOTICE ME
      If I don’t know anything at all,
      but one thing, it might be that
      you are my one thing.
      Crowded rooms, empty spaces; you are there.
      Sun shines through the rain and smiles bow
      in my day’s moments.
      Hood rat, Black American Princess, ghetto queen, Sugar Babe, and the one you need.
      I am all of these, a Chameleon in disguise
      trying not to stay on the vanilla side of the street.
      Laughter in the breeze, silky fresh under the sheets, a sensuous mind knows no bounds
      when it comes to you, if only you will notice me.
      By Pamelap

  7. Jrentler

    christ-you know not
    what you do!

    he turned water into wine not tequila
    shots off a boy from mexico city
    & there’s no salvation from above
    when nailed in a sling
    moaning our father’s name

    & the hangover’s no halo
    but a crown of thorns
    & prophecies are egg yolk bile
    foaming from your lips
    which have forgotten how to pray

  8. headintheclouds87

    The Life Left Behind

    I’ve given adequate notice
    Of my sudden new adventure,
    A few weeks for them to prepare
    Some nebulous replacement
    While I plan and brief
    My imminent sigh of relief
    As I close that door finally
    Yet with my hand still trembling
    From fear and trepidation,
    My mind still never failing
    To fret in every situation.

    But no choice was ever made
    Without something at stake,
    So I step into unknown light
    To escape the rueful dark
    And leave future to chance
    In the vague hope it can calm
    My ever shaking hands.

  9. Rayn Epremian

    Eurydice

    You looked at me,
    one arm behind me on
    the bench, the other
    using the cuts and scrapes
    on my hands as excuses to take them [I’d have given them
    to you, had you asked]

    You looked at me,
    and I looked away at the shapes
    of trees, dark through glinting
    bits of cold, I couldn’t
    look at you because I knew what we
    were waiting for and I wanted it
    so badly I was
    nervous [Did you notice?]

    After kissing you I leaned
    against you in
    relief that I’d remembered how
    All at once you were
    the source of both
    anxiety and comfort

    That’s how it begins and by
    the time you notice it’s
    too late

    [Don’t look
    at me]
    Notice

  10. taylor graham

    HIGHLIGHT

    I cleared a path down-swale toward creek,
    cutting head-high wild oats brittle
    as so many slender tapers ready for a flame.
    Early morning, our land still in shadow
    of ridge as I mowed my swath deeper
    toward gully. Then sun topped the ridge
    igniting everything with light,
    so trees along dry creek-bed came visible,
    each with leaf-green distinct from the others.
    Had I never noticed before, these trees
    with their separate lives? So closely rooted
    they stood – live oak and valley oak, buckeye
    and willow, wild plum plumping its tiny
    tart-sweet fruits for the birds and me.

  11. taylor graham

    TANGO

    a skewbald mare on the Pony Express run

    The first time I saw her dance
    slide into a twist
    matching her partner’s unseen move –

    She’ll do anything, he said,
    for watermelon.

    Tonight again backlit
    by setting sun mincing a smart pace
    slowing traffic

    she stopped at a touch
    of her partner’s hand, stood statue

    so I could notice the surprise
    black of her tail,
    long whiskers she let me touch

    the soft of her muzzle,
    it was the last of gloaming.

  12. Cam Yee

    The Gathering

    This is to inform you that
    on Saturday this week, we’ll
    meet in the old town hall,
    sit tall on the hard wood pews,
    with a cool glass of lemonade,
    or coffee, in one hand,
    and a cookie in a napkin in the other.
    His wife will stand, stooped,
    with shoulders sloping, small, so small
    behind that solid block of wood.
    Her silver hair will gleam
    in the lead-glass window light
    as she recites
    a litany of their life
    in a voice that
    trips and stumbles,
    skips and tumbles
    over the hard words.
    Her daughters will move like doves
    from the eaves, each
    to cup their mother’s elbow
    in soft hands, shawled arms like wings,
    will link behind her back
    eyes, bright, will meet
    above her head, agree,
    to catch her.

  13. Sara McNulty

    A Funny Breed

    Dog walkers are
    a funny breed. They watch
    the path try to rein in
    leash as dog drifts
    to one side then another.
    Uh oh! Is that a chicken
    bone he picked up. Wrestle
    it out of his mouth while
    telling him how bad he is
    to eat something delicious
    off the floor. Maybe a squirrel
    decides to dash madly
    up a tree five feet
    away from where dog
    and walker are standing.
    They spot that squirrel
    same time as their dog
    who lunges forward
    in a futile attempt to catch it.
    Oh look, they tell their dog,
    here comes Baxter, there
    goes Rocky, and Chloe.
    Never able to tell
    you what other dog
    walkers look like, or
    their names. Memory holds
    only the dog’s name,
    and color. Dog walkers
    are a funny breed.

    1. Poetjo

      I like you begin and end your piece with the same phrase and you write beautifully of how dogs know each other so well – the dog walkers – not so much!

  14. SarahLeaSales

    When This Little Twiggy Went to Meat Market (Notice: All Sales Final)

    Twiggy Piggy, a foxymoronic sow,
    went to look for a smokin’ hot mammalian beefcake
    with whom she could cook up something tasty
    (like a litter of mini meatloaves).
    She turned down Monsieur Filet Mignon
    after he made the piggist comment
    that his preference was Kosher.
    When Ground Biff said he needed a little pink slime
    to beef him up,
    she sunk her teeth into Sir Porterhouse–
    liking the largeness & tenderness of him.
    But she realized her haste
    when he cornered her in her sty
    & said
    that after he was well-done,
    all that would be left would be her squeal.

  15. julie e.

    PUT ON NOTICE.

    I put you on notice
    I don’t give a poo
    re: all that you say
    and all that you do
    to make me look bad
    to my kith and my kin
    and let yourself off
    and absolve all your sin
    We once had a marriage
    I loved you a lot
    you say I am crazy?
    Well, kettle, meet pot!
    I put you on notice
    I don’t give a poo
    ‘bout the shite that you say–
    now if only ‘twere true.

  16. MET

    The Samaritan Noticed and Did More…

    He was on the side of the road,
    Beaten, bloody, and broken.

    A man of God saw him
    And crossed to the other side
    He did not want to dirty himself.

    A man of wealth saw him
    With the flies covering him as he died,
    Hurried by for this would cost him money.

    A man despised by others
    For he was not a pure race
    Noticed the man.

    He took his jug of wine
    To give the man drink.
    He helped him on his donkey.

    He found a healer- paid him
    And the innkeeper.
    He said he would come by again.

    To pay whatever bills left;
    To help the man farther,
    And then he said goodbye.

    Jesus called the man good,
    Who noticed his neighbor,
    The man
    Despised by others.

    He is the one we know
    As a good man and a Samaritan.

    He is the one who did more
    Than notice, but entangled himself
    In an unknown man’s life
    On the side of the road,
    Bloody, broken and bruised.
    He is who we should be.

    We are not called to be
    People who profess God
    And look the other way…

    We are not called to be
    People who looked away
    While counting our money.

    We are called
    To be as those dejected
    Relegated to a place
    Where empathy rules,
    And kindness guides.

    We are called to be
    Entangled in those
    We want to walk by,
    And to be despised by those
    Who worship wealth, and
    Do not know the nature of God.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 20, 2018

  17. MET

    Un-Noticed

    There she sat in the back row.
    Watching others pass her by…

    There she walked home alone
    It was only her and she did not matter.

    She was there when others needed her;
    No one was there when she needed them.

    The paper read she had died alone.
    A neighbor noticed the smell.

    Mary Elizabeth Todd
    June 20, 2018

    1. Jane Shlensky

      Attention

      Her shoes are neon pink this time.
      He smiles and sends the note.
      Her glance questions him. “So?”
      How to answer that?
      “I noticed,” he mouths,
      but she turns her head away
      toward the teacher droning on
      about Picasso’s blue period.
      Blue, he thinks. I could have told
      Pablo a thing or two about blue,
      but he can’t feel it now, nothing
      sad or lonely. He feels…pink,
      all joy and laughter and health,
      all cheer and possibility, until
      he’s smiling ready to burst.
      The note drops on his desk.
      “You’re happy!” it reads.
      When he lifts his eyebrows
      her way, she mouths,
      “I noticed. I’m glad.”

  18. PowerUnit

    Meaning is malleable
    Turn up the volume control
    Tone it down with whispers
    What are you really trying to say?
    Did you even notice the protests?
    No red flags within your message
    Renders as it will
    A mind of it’s own
    The hateful clawing of logic
    The flatline of uncaring rhythms
    Unreliable surfaces
    How straight your backbone
    Only your heartbeat is pure

    *a negative space poem

  19. PressOn

    THAT SIDE WAS MADE FOR YOU AND ME

    Thus spake
    Woody Guthrie:
    the “no trespassing” sign
    is ominous, but its back side
    is blank.

    NB: This little piece was inspired by one of the lyrics of Guthrie’s song (below), The complete tune is rarely heard these days.

    This Land Is Your Land
    Words and Music by Woody Guthrie

    This land is your land This land is my land
    From California to the New York island;
    From the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
    This land was made for you and me.

    As I was walking that ribbon of highway,
    I saw above me that endless skyway:
    I saw below me that golden valley:
    This land was made for you and me.

    I’ve roamed and rambled and I followed my footsteps
    To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts;
    And all around me a voice was sounding:
    This land was made for you and me.

    When the sun came shining, and I was strolling,
    And the wheat fields waving and the dust clouds rolling,
    As the fog was lifting a voice was chanting:
    This land was made for you and me.

    As I went walking I saw a sign there
    And on the sign it said “No Trespassing.”
    But on the other side it didn’t say nothing,
    That side was made for you and me.

    In the shadow of the steeple I saw my people,
    By the relief office I seen my people;
    As they stood there hungry, I stood there asking
    Is this land made for you and me?

    Nobody living can ever stop me,
    As I go walking that freedom highway;
    Nobody living can ever make me turn back
    This land was made for you and me.

  20. Daniel Paicopulos

    Suddenly I Noticed

    You’re so lucky,
    I said.
    Why,
    she asked.

    Because
    You have had me
    to love.
    She laughed.

    No, really,
    I am so in need of love
    And
    You have loved so well.

    I tried,
    She said.
    Oh, way more than try.
    You did so well.

    And now?
    Who will you love?
    Me,
    she said, at last.

    1. Cam Yee

      This poem captures so much with its small details. My father passed away this year, and this makes me think of my mother who loved him deeply through his long decline but now can let go and find herself again. The words “at last” speak volumes.

  21. connielpeters

    Unnoticed

    She works hard at becoming invisible,
    Yet, feels surprise when no one sees her.
    Her silence renders her disguisable.
    She works hard at becoming invisible.
    A new wardrobe would be advisable.
    She serves as a self-saboteur.
    She works hard at becoming invisible,
    Yet, feels surprised when no one sees her.

  22. grcran

    teacher attrition

    gave notice. good job wasn’t good no more.
    respect was left behind at schoolroom door.
    degreed professional issued a gun.
    word pistols not effective on the un-
    dereducated public. so they ruled
    that teachers carry weapons. this all fueled
    by nra and sad divided land.
    less liberty. injustice. ain’t it grand.
    for all a free-for-all of smirk and hiss.
    no wonder that he went and gave notice.

    gpr crane

  23. Anthony94

    Like a Billboard

    You put me on
    notice that morning
    in the tiny kitchenette

    how when we were
    married you would be
    able to knock me down

    for standing up to you
    my only answer shaky
    laughter but the stronger

    part of me knew
    there’d be no wedding
    no floor beneath my face

    in another country
    I’d watched your brother
    beat a woman once while

    we looked on helplessly
    no cop would interfere
    waited until her partner

    stormed out, her shaky
    laughter reassuring us that
    nothing was wrong

    but everything was even when
    the next morning she put on
    extra makeup to hide her black

    eye, wore her long-sleeved uniform
    so that in the silence of our
    complicity I began to notice

    a certain reluctance in my heart
    began to conjecture with my head
    and grabbed a future as I packed

    up hope and threw in a few things
    for the two of us, fled to walk alone
    but upright. She’s forty-nine today.

  24. Jason L. Martin

    A Pantoum for a Beautiful Girl and a Horrible Poet

    If only I could be with you forever in this pantoum
    I could kiss you, and refrain from this torturous scheme.
    Alas, we are stanzas. Yours is from an unfortunate poem,
    a poem so brutal it wakes me cold before I finish my dream.

    I could kiss you, and refrain from this torturous scheme,
    and my love would distract you from writing another verse.
    A poem so brutal it wakes me cold before I finish my dream,
    by a woman so fair, please give up your iambic curse!

    My love could distract you from writing another verse,
    and that is all we need, as mine is enough to keep us afloat.
    A woman as fair as you needs to give up this iambic curse
    about a maiden, a lucky cat, a gentlemanly prince, and a goat.

    Yet still you return to taunt me alone, it seems, in this workshop.
    If only I could be with you forever in this pantoum.
    You are oblivious to your verse, but your beauty won’t stop
    this dream that we are stanzas. Yours is from an unfortunate poem.

  25. Bushkill

    In Darkness Born

    My life is spent in darkness deep
    Where no sun or star or moonshine
    Reach. Only me, alone with sure
    Thundering heart to stop and stare.

    Fiercely beats my heart in fearful
    Rhythm, afraid of the dark and
    All the unseen things hidden in
    The folds of scattered—broken—time.

    On this far-flung shore of heaven’s
    Sea, where sound sounds not and my lost
    Soul strains for shelter from booming
    Silence, gravity’s hug beckons.

    And falling fast, a light unto
    The world, I burn, yearn, with flaming
    Contrail “Watch me! See me!” I cry
    And hope the world will raise an eye.

  26. carolemt87

    Bulletin

    I want to be a bulletin
    with tear away numbers
    bright yellow or neon green
    hanging on the wall of the coffee house
    on South St in Lincoln Nebraska.

    I think it was named after a bird
    yes, Meadowlark, that’s it.

    I’ll wait there strung
    by tape or thumb tacks
    watching the coffee hounds
    and hungover poets
    waiting for your nicotine stained
    fingers to peel away
    the last piece
    of my flesh.

    1. Bushkill

      …hungover poets. Interesting word choice. I’ve read the last stanza several times and I really like what you did there. Strung up and then beset by others strung out. well crafted.

  27. k weber

    rip and speckle

    there’s one freckle
    on my face. if you
    climb the peaks

    of my upper lip
    you might
    find the pigment

    shift. it’s not too
    drastic but notice-
    able as breath

    when the elevation
    changes. rappel
    down to the lower

    lip. there is a scar
    from scissors. i
    cut the blood

    from my pout
    in first grade. my
    curiosity is still an ice

    pick stabbing
    at the frozen edges
    of mountaintops. that

    freckle remains
    the cherry on top
    of your kiss.

  28. tripoet

    Robert, I actually hadn’t known the distinction between a haiku and a senryu before I read yours today.
    I really liked it– the subtle (and maybe at times not so subtle) awareness of what a person observes about us– in this case your shoes. I enjoyed how you used the preposition “over” as opposed to “on”. This really made your poem hum.

  29. Poetjo

    Morning Prayer

    I want
    to notice
    more
    as I
    live
    in
    my
    day.

    I want
    to notice
    the
    ladybug
    landing
    on the
    table
    as I
    have my
    morning
    tea
    on my
    porch.

    I want
    to notice
    the
    shy
    smile
    of the
    boy who
    drops off
    my paper
    while I
    have my
    tea
    on my
    porch.

    I want
    to notice
    the sun
    inch
    itself
    up the
    sky,
    a fiery
    ball of
    perpetual
    patience,
    warming me
    on my
    porch.

    But I
    probably
    won’t
    notice
    any of
    these
    things
    as long I
    have this
    damn
    phone
    in my
    hand.

    Sigh.

    Addiction
    keeps
    me from
    seeing
    small
    moments,
    rich
    with
    grace.

    1. tripoet

      I love that this is a morning prayer. I believe that having read your poem that I will make certain to notice the lovely small things today. TY.

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