Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 329

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This will be our final Wednesday Poetry Prompt until December. As many of you already know, we do a poem-a-day challenge in November that is dedicated to getting material together for a chapbook manuscript. Click here to learn more about the 2015 November PAD Chapbook Challenge.

For today's prompt, write a "you should" poem. A lot of well-meaning people are often ready to hand out advice; for instance, my two oldest boys like to tell me I should write a book that people read--like a novel. I'm sure you know folks like that; heck, I'm sure we're all guilty of it from time to time. But today's poem is to write such a poem: a "you should" poem. Can be from the perspective of giving advice, receiving advice, or an impartial 3rd party.

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Writer’s Digest is offering a contest strictly for poets with a top prize of $1,000, publication in Writer’s Digest magazine, and a copy of the 2016 Poet’s Market.

There are cash prizes for Second ($250) and Third ($100) Prizes, as well as prizes for the Top 25 poems.

Somebody has to win those prizes, so you should enter and give it a go. But act fast!

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Here’s my attempt at a You Should poem:

“Duties”

Mom says, "You should take out the trash
and do the dishes and do your homework
and be nicer to your sister and think about
the starving children around the world and
your mother," but I already think about mother
(how can I not) and the rest is kind of boring.
Plus, it's kind of a lot of work doing all that
stuff, so I try not to, but then, dad says, "You
should listen to your mother and make your
bed and get a job and think about college
and quit being weird and lazy and do the
laundry," and a laundry list of other things,
like I don't do anything or something, and
maybe I should: But I'll read this book first.

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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). Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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