ALL the Poetry Prompts

I have been deeply slacking in posting the prompts I have been working on so I am going to post them all here and then get back to posting the process later today. Thank you to all of you who have been following along! ^_^

Before I list ALL the prompts, just a reminder:

If you would like to read the poems that I have been writing from these prompts, they are in the book For Those Who OutlastTheir Pain. I will divide the profits between Rachel’s campaign The Outlast Project and the local women’s shelter. If you would like to pre-order this book, you can do so for $15 via PayPal to and please be sure to include your shipping address. THANK YOU!Also, stay tuned for a Kickstarter campaign for pre-ordering! 


And now for ALL the prompts!

  1. If your body is a church, what memory is its god?
  2. Write your mother as a forest and all that was lost in it.
  3. Write your childhood in 12 apologies.*(*the apologies do not have to be from you)
  4. Witches / water, vampires / wooden stakes. Anything can be destroyed. Drag a shame of yours into a room, then kill it.
  5. Write a murder ballad to the hands that wolf you.
  6. Write an obituary for your worst year.
  7. Ten lessons blood taught you.
  8. Write your father as a ghost town & the silences that inhabit it.
  9. In the museum of poverty
  10. write an angry letter to an ex in the voice of one of your body parts.
  11. Write the morning before the betrayal.
  12. Who was your coldest night?
  13. What ghosts flesh your body?
  14. praise the heavy ghosts of an unforgiven thing
  15. Write what has grown in place of her heart.
  16. A poem in two parts–describe safe as it was when you were small / what it is now.
  17. Describe them in five resurrections.
  18. NEW Write a small story about the women who live at the bottom of the river.
  19. NEW Write a two-part list poem. 1) All they mistook you for 2) All you mistook them for.
  20. A poem written from inside his body.
  21. Write the many translations of your skin.
  22. Your heart as a sideshow act—promote some of its tricks.
  23. Write a 25-line brag poem about what you OWN.
  24. Write someone you love a proper heaven.
  25. Fuck what you lost that night. Write what you gained.
  26. Write a list poem of forbidden things that bring you joy.
  27. Write the ten line biography for your teeth.
  28. in five small vignettes, write the legacy of your hair
  29. Write yourself mighty & naked, strolling through a town that does not deserve you.
  30. Write a thank you letter to your body. For all it has done. For all it has endured & driven out & welcomed in. Share the story of your bones. The unruly hairs and blood. Where in your body do you carry most your ancestors? Where does all that unspent love reside? Who hovers above that complex brain of yours? What beasts chase you? What beast(s) must you become to stay here? What beasts do you regularly drive down into the earth?

BONUS: Describe justice in ten objects
(I started this one before NaPoWriMo and will put it in micro book instead of including it in the main book)


Rachel posted a LOT of prompts. I only picked 30 for National Poetry Month 30/30 challenge. Here are the rest that I was able to find:

  • Open letter to your favorite letter in the alphabet. (Work on using that letter as much as possible.)
  • Write a poem that speaks of what it would rather be.
  • Write a dinner party where all the guests are those you’ve wronged.
  • Write a poem of unforgiveness.
  • Write what has grown in place of his mouth.
  • Write about a small boy standing alone in the middle of the road holding a photo of your _______
  • If you know it, start a poem with your birth weight. Account for each pound; imagine all you were carrying w/ you when you arrived.
  • Write a letter to whiteness in the voice of a bullet
  • Write a praise poem to your ugly ass feet.
  • Poem about the outfit or haircut that damn near ruined your life
  • Write a non-apology for what you’ve stolen. (I’m guessing this is after “This Is Just To Say” by William Carlos Williams)

So that is a total of 42 prompts! Happy poeming! ^_^


3 thoughts on “ALL the Poetry Prompts

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