Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 493

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a rumor poem.


For today’s prompt, write a rumor poem. The poem itself could contain a rumor. Or it could be about people spreading rumors. Rumor has it there are a number of ways an enterprising poet could come at this prompt.

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Here’s my attempt at a Rumor Poem:

“He said she said”

He said she said that he said she
was a beautiful angel, but
now he denies ever saying
a thing, because he don’t want to
be pinned to no gossip like a
dead and beautiful butterfly
in a case where everyone stares.

94 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 493

  1. AvatarJuanita Lewison-Snyder

    a paleo rumor
    by juanita lewison-snyder

    (“men have always been the reciters of poetry in the desert.” -michael ondaatje)

    yes,
    but women have been doing it since first
    picking berries and giving birth in caves.
    later, they would teach man how to
    best win their affections with those
    same lame recitations.

    small minds
    big mouths
    bravado the size of a certain organ
    secrets, lies, and unicorn truths
    gossip twisted around sticks like
    mammoth kebabs over an open fire.

    rumors sizzle and singe
    make and break couplings
    shun members from the tribe
    and yes, scout’s honour
    managed to get that ridiculous stick drawing
    by the lowest paleo artist of the group, Sven
    up on the communal cave wall.

    yes,
    that same Sven
    who’d had his last remaining good eye
    poked out reciting poetry in the desert.

    or so i heard.

    © 2019 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  2. AvatarLCaramanna

    Teachers’ Lounge

    They talked about me
    in the teachers’ lounge
    that wasn’t a lounge
    by any fumes of fancy,
    but rather a sleazy basement dwelling
    girdled in water-stained drywall
    polluted by tainted words chewed
    and spit out between swallows of
    lunch du jour.

    Have you heard?
    Did you know?
    You won’t believe …

    They talked about me,
    their poisoned sentences punctuated
    with putrid words
    more lethal than the lead in chipping paint on the concrete floor
    or the asbestos-laden insulation around the sewer pipes
    in the teachers’ lounge
    that wasn’t a lounge by any fumes of fancy,
    only a space next to the boiler room
    where rumors sizzled
    and gossip microwaved the innocent
    along with lunch du jour.

    They talked about me today
    in the teachers’ lounge
    that remained, though ten years had passed,
    not a lounge by any fumes of fancy.
    During lunch du jour, they dished the dirt
    that perseverance yielded success
    and gossip did not deter.
    Truth soured on their tongues,
    venomous words spewed: You won’t believe…
    She climbed to the penthouse.
    Rumor has it,
    she has never once gone down to the basement
    with dirty laundry!

    Lorraine Caramanna

  3. Avatargrcran

    Grim Ace

    Decided, did old baby boomer
    This is real Tis no longer a rumor
    Story told by the face
    Groovy grinning grimace
    Father time has an ill sense of humor

    gpr crane

  4. AvatarRon Wright

    Rumors by Ron Wright

    Rumors could be good you know,
    Like chocolate’s good for you.
    No doubt it halts vertigo,
    Eyes closing while you chew.

    One week caffeine is said evil,
    The next it’s superfine.
    So half the time drink your fill,
    The other half sip wine.

    Cup half-empty or half-full,
    Rumors can be frail.
    Accept the best, belay the bull,
    And balance out the scale.

  5. AvatarDarlene Franklin

    Oklahoma started as a rumor
    Tales of prairies crossed by schooners
    Claimed by “sooners” and “boomers”
    Sooners dressed in levis and bloomers
    Oil-rich land and their boomers
    Will Rogers’ home-spun humor
    Helped aviation succeed sooner
    And don’t forget our many crooners
    Ruby, Toby, Garth, and other tuners
    Those wind-swept plains are no rumor
    Tornado tales told with red-dirt humor
    College co-eds and honeymooners
    Heed the call, “Boomer! Sooner!”

  6. Avatartaylor graham

    ONE OF A KIND

    You thought it was just a rumor,
    a bad joke – fast-food-chain sandwiches
    coming to historic Main Street,
    where the cornerstone bakery used to beckon
    with homemade apple fritters,
    and a stainless bowl of fresh water
    sat outside the door for passerby dogs.
    Early mornings, walking
    my puppy before the shops opened,
    I’d see locals conversing over coffee there,
    right across from the Bell Tower –
    heart of our historic downtown.
    Fast-food-formula places have no place
    here, according to City Code.
    How could this happen? It’s not a rumor.
    It’s on the front page. History buffs
    have filed appeals.
    Rumor’s on the wind down Main Street;
    it laces through the Bell Tower’s
    metal-work like intrigue, the mysteries
    of centuries never solved.
    We live our history. It flows
    on and on like breath, like rumor.

  7. AvatarSara McNulty

    I Heard A Rumor

    Now you cannot tell
    anyone. Promise?
    I saw Sandra and Mike
    fighting. Could be
    they are splitting up.
    Probably Sandra’s fault.

    I heard that Sandra
    and Mike split up. Well,
    Mike always did have
    a mean temper.

    Did you hear about that
    knockdown, drag out
    fight between Sandra
    and Mike? Almost called
    the cops. They have
    broken up after Mike
    gave Sandra a bloody
    lip, and she gave him
    a black eye. Both look
    terrible. Both are now
    single.

  8. AvatarNancy Posey

    Eavesdropping

    She found
    the conversation in the next booth
    titillating,
    scintillating.
    She had to fight her instinct
    to take notes
    just to be sure
    she didn’t miss a word.

    In a small town,
    scandal isn’t hard to come by
    but so rarely
    does it shock,
    make her flush,
    even blush.

    A tidbit like this would prove
    valuable social capital.
    She couldn’t wait
    to drop just a small detail
    into cozy table talk.

    Leaning closer, face blank,
    feigning disinterest
    picking at her salad,
    rearranging her peas,
    she listens for names,
    the icing on the cake,
    certain she’s guessed just right—

    and then the reveal—
    the guilty party.

    Her name.

  9. AvatarPowerUnit

    From a Picture Seen [of RLB] on Facebook 😉

    There’s a rumor going ’round
    town
    that someone’s let their hair
    down.

    Too long it’s been
    and it’s getting kind of thin
    and gray.

    What used to be brown
    can no longer be found
    and it won’t be too long
    until it all sheds
    away.

    1. AvatarWalter J Wojtanik

      Mine as well has long since faded
      As many behind my back have stated.
      Balding came a bit to soon,
      I’ve lost a lot of hair since June.
      But, as with Robert, it spells our fate,
      Where mine departs, his hides his pate.
      And such rumors paint our sorrow,
      Hair today, gone tomorrow!

  10. AvatarBigg_Dammy

    I heard he says they say,
    Wouldn’t mind if it’s claims or fake,
    Permit me to share,
    To whom wish to hear;

    She snatched her hubby,
    I’m sure it ain’t false,
    But I can’t really fathom,
    Where I quietly learnt that from.

    Deep gossip inventor,
    I fondle it like an orator,
    You need to see my sense of humor,
    When serving the romour.

    I heard my outcome can be marring,
    Ain’t sure it’s no romour.

  11. Avatartimphilippart

    For Emily

    he heard that tumors were running wild,
    especially, among the elder set,
    her heart was broken by the tumors,
    his spirit was crushed by the tumors,
    another read the tumors on twitter,
    she got the tumor from her sister and passed it on,
    tumors are evil,
    sinful and,
    spreading tumors is an affront to God—
    Oh,
    Rumors?
    Never Mind.

  12. AvatarWalter J Wojtanik

    THE MINISTRY OF SILLY RUMOURS, by Walter J Wojtanik

    Excuse me, is this the rumour room?
    Who told you that? That is a vicious lie.
    I was told to come here to file a rumour.
    You were not! That is completely false!
    But it says that on your door!
    You assume that is my door,
    but I’ve never seen it before!
    It’s the only way in or out!
    That’s a bold-faced fallacy!
    No it’s not! It says right there,
    “Ministry of Silly Rumours”
    That’s a complete fabrication,
    you just made that up!
    I did not! The directory even indicates…
    OH, THE DIRECTORY! Big rot!
    I should tell everyone that you wet the bed!
    I do not! Yes, you do! Do you deny it?
    Um, no. But just a wee tinkle.
    See how rumours get started?
    You’re a silly person!

  13. Avatartaylor graham

    AUGUST BETWEEN

    One leaf’s twirling on the twig
    as if proposing to end the masquerade
    of summer. One bird shares its carol-
    calling to a mate with no prospect
    of nesting. Rumors of autumn
    on the breeze, as a reaper considers
    the field. Lengthening shadow
    more pensive than grim.

  14. Avatartripoet

    A Breeding Place For Rumors

    Watch out for ladies
    in a pack, standing
    outside the school
    front, waiting for kids
    to be released
    while exchanging gossip.
    What rumors they share
    today, may affect your tomorrow,

  15. Avatarjulie e.

    Seasons

    I heard a rumor
    that things were going down
    and change was in season
    riper than
    a baby’s dirty diaper
    smelled
    and that he was crying in
    his rum and Coke
    and she almost felt
    guilty
    till she remembered
    the rum was why
    his eyes turned black
    and his fists clenched
    and his mouth went mean
    and
    I heard a rumor
    she’s happy now
    since she never
    went back
    to him and his rum

  16. AvatarAnthony94

    Rumor Has It

    but who is rumor
    and is there more
    than one and are they like
    the Royal We or simply
    some dirty faced wraith
    up from an abandoned cellar
    hearing things in the night
    when the rats forage on
    rinds tossed down the stone steps
    by the school girl who runs
    past unraveling orange
    spirals drying dying curling
    into what the rats will toss
    heavenward(?) in pure disgust
    there being no food beyond
    empty bitter rumors or even
    rumor itself spreading foul lies
    from twisted misinformation as
    if s/he could reinvent reality and
    somehow gorge on whole fruit.

  17. AvatarTracy Davidson

    The Neighbours Gossip

    There’s a rumour going round
    my husband left me for another.
    I bored him, so they say, being
    old enough to be his mother.

    The gossips do not bother me,
    I just smile back and shake my head.
    One day they’ll know he didn’t leave,
    for he’s in the basement… quite dead.

  18. Avatarkhoward

    Dime or…

    Rumors start with a thought
    Then it grows into a word
    This word then is released
    Into the world it goes
    The form it takes, don’t matter
    Is it juicy for a little birdie
    If the rumor has it, is it real
    Rumors a dime a dozen or
    The best you ever heard
    To pass them… YOU DECIDE!

  19. AvatarLeeAnne Ellyett

    Rumors

    Gossip is our small town, spreads around,
    while fiery tongues spew the news
    and with each telling, the story grew.

    She closed up the flower shop.
    broke and broken, a complete flop,

    Rumor has it, she’s lost her mind,
    gone over, crossed the line.

    As she drives away, knowing one day
    that she will come back, without attack,
    to make amends, and put an end
    to all the rumors.

  20. Avatarkhoward

    My rant

    Rumors, Rumors, Rumors
    The alleged gunman
    A alleged robber
    When will it end
    A smoking gun is alleged
    The only truth is a victim
    Why, why, why

  21. AvatarWalter J Wojtanik

    TELLING STORIES OUT OF SCHOOL, by Walter J Wojtanik

    You didn’t hear it from me,
    but I hear tell that all hell will break loose
    if we choose to ignore the clues.
    I mean, I have a sense of humour
    but rumour has it that what is coming
    down the pike will spike off the charts
    so we better start paying it heed.
    We’re going to need a year’s supply
    of snacks and goodies
    (Every foodie need snacks and goodies)
    toasty warm hoodies
    & nice cozy footies for the coming fallout.
    The chill will surely kill the vegetation
    and the whole damn nation will be affected.
    We’ve elected to ignore all the signs.
    It will make your head spin. It does mine
    anyway. One of these days it may be true,
    but don’t mind me, I’m just a fool
    telling stories out of school!

    1. AvatarLeeAnne Ellyett

      William, although I have not been posting, I have been reading and your poems over the last few weeks have been outstanding. Thank you for the great reading.

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