May 9, 2011

This week’s prompt

Remember last week when we said we had an idea/scheme for poems you may have written recently? Here it is:

Look over your recently written poem pile with the idea that giving is both noble & fruitful. Find a line or two from a poem and hand them over to the Big Tent community. Give us your favorites. Give us the wonderful lines that just didn’t fit your poem. Give us lines that seemed to come from some strange planet and plopped in your backyard.

Yes. Copy and paste a line or two and leave them in the comments (of this post). Don’t dilly-dally. Get them planted in the comments so folks have lines to pull from!

Then pick a line or two for yourself (from this lovely fecund pile) and write yourself a poem using this/these line(s) as your springboard. (Do give credit to your benefactor in your poem post.)

How prompts work under the Big Tent

We post prompts on Mondays, and you have all week to write your poems, based on our fabulous prompt or any other inspiration. Come back on Friday when you will find a “Come One, Come All” post where you can use the comments section to 1) leave a link to your poem or 2) leave the poem in its entirety.

You’ll have all day Friday (and all weekend!) to post your work and read each others’ work. Take your time. Enjoy all the poems that are new to the world.

Some hints

Hint: We’ve set Big Tent Poetry to Central Time.

Hint: An easy way to check on new post comments is with RSS reader, if you use one. Here’s the address:

Hint: If you are new to our site, your comment(s) will be held for moderation for your first few posts. If you put more than one link in your comment, your comment(s) will be held for moderation. We’re checking the filters often, so don’t despair! That said, if it takes more than a half a day to see it come live on the site, do email us at info (at) (But be patient, okay?)

Circus etiquette

We figure you know how to play in the poetry community, but here are the basics:

Be nice. Have fun. Remember we aren’t a critique forum. We want to support each other as we bring more poetry into our lives. Only provide critique if someone specifically asks for it.

Although we love seeing our badge in the sidebar of your blog, we would appreciate it if you would also link back to the site in each of your poem posts. Linking within your post helps people travel back and forth from your site to the Big Tent Poetry site, and it helps perpetuate Big Tent Poetry “findability” in Google searches — and that helps us all.


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33 Responses to “ MONDAY PROMPT / May 9 ”

  1. Mariya Koleva on May 9, 2011 at 12:44 am

    Happy Victory Day all! Here are my two lines from a poem I put together for the November Poem-A-Day Challenge with Poetic Asides:
    “The warehouse of your anxiety
    should be torn down”
    And here is the complete piece.
    I hope someone will find it useful :-)

  2. vivienne blake on May 9, 2011 at 2:12 am

    My two lines from two different poems

    small miracles of light bathe fields in gold

    marvel at the miracle of the ordinary.

  3. dani h on May 9, 2011 at 2:51 am

    i don’t know that these are worth anything~ maybe someone will have better luck than i did:

    rejection carried through veins like blood
    i won’t tell you that i want you
    no more waiting for you to want me

  4. Dick Jones on May 9, 2011 at 3:30 am

    A couple of lines here from a poem that’s become a source of words, metaphors and verses rather than a complete piece.

    From the valley, a blue updraft
    of dust and seeds and wings.

    What an interesting prompt. I’m looking forward to the products.

  5. nan on May 9, 2011 at 5:52 am

    This might spur some writing: “dishonest, against our better judgment.” (Could be his, her, my, their better judgement.) It came from my recent poem, paying for damage.

  6. annell on May 9, 2011 at 7:07 am

    What Fun!

    The difficulty
    Of squeezing an elephant
    Through the eye of an needle

    • Mariya Koleva on May 9, 2011 at 7:35 am

      Great fun, indeed! I’ll give your lines a try, annell. It is really hard to choose, and I would like to use everybody’s lines, but, let’s face it – I can’t possibly accomplish all that.

  7. Linda Jacobs on May 9, 2011 at 7:25 am

    These are from poems I wrote during Journal Writing time in my classroom…nothing special, just a couple of simple images.

    ~You spread a quilt over the leaves and pull me down beside you.

    ~This morning the sun said yes to the fog.

  8. Elizabeth J. on May 9, 2011 at 7:33 am

    Intriguing prompt. My lines are from a recent poem entitled “Faith”:

    until roots burst forth, contained
    no longer by a shell, not so silently

  9. Deb on May 9, 2011 at 8:34 am

    the only word left is compassion (

    * * *

    I make a picture of our passion/ as if I’m a medical illustrator (

  10. Andrew Kreider on May 9, 2011 at 8:43 am

    Great ideas! Here’s one from me from the last month.

    We feel compelled to talk about it
    Like birds on a wire

  11. irene on May 9, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Maybe you want to mull over this line:

    My dreams are the color of turquoise


    • Henry Clemmons on May 13, 2011 at 5:26 pm

      I used part of your turduoie line:) Thanks.

  12. Cathy on May 9, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Here’s my wonderful line. In my poem it’s two line but I like see you play around with the line break. If you use, could let me know :)

    Fold me up and leave me to collect dust.

    • Lindsey on May 9, 2011 at 11:55 am

      Very intriguing.

  13. Julie Jordan Scott on May 9, 2011 at 10:33 am

    Here are two from notebook poetry

    ~ the river tells me thank you

    ~ grey bird turns yellow when its wings open

  14. pamelasayers on May 9, 2011 at 11:25 am

    From two different poems:

    -There’s a clover patch outside infinity

    -Sequined thoughts no longer shine from
    unclear memory

  15. Lindsey on May 9, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Bracing him. Bracing
    me. Walk him step by step in
    shoes without laces

  16. Kim Nelson on May 9, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    little respite
    poured enough courage in my cup
    to get me through

  17. Mr. Walker on May 9, 2011 at 11:59 pm

    From two different poems:

    Every boy is small with so much inside,


    bound in these imperfect forms

  18. Joseph Harker on May 10, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    “We downed them just to be polite”

    From Kilud. I was talking about sprats, but I suppose there are many things that could be downed, politely or otherwise.

    • Joseph Harker on May 10, 2011 at 1:28 pm

      And if that won’t do:

      “Midnight catches us by surprise.”

      from Comfort Food.

  19. Henry Clemmons on May 10, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Two lines from me.

    “Reflecting temperamental silk soaring scarves of clouds;”
    “Field’s of red and yellow rooted flowers and a windmill twirling”

  20. brenda w on May 10, 2011 at 7:37 pm

    Here are two from me.

    living is not herding sheep
    I am clay malleable by happenstance

    ~ Brenda Warren ~

  21. gautami tripathy on May 11, 2011 at 3:23 am

    I offer the following two lines:

    “an image as broken as the mirror”

    “I can’t recall the contents of those days”

  22. Jeanne Aguilar on May 11, 2011 at 7:46 am

    I keep trying to find a piece of something to leave here, but since I only started writing in Dec., I got nothing. So here’s a poem I wrote but never finished. Don’t think there’s any “gems” here, but wanted to contribute!

    Write the cure as though it’s already happened.

    Allow me to speak of my recent successes
    My brand new shoes and my pretty new dresses
    My house so perfect, my baseboards divine
    My bathroom luxurious, my furniture fine,
    I wake up each day, and with time to spare
    I peruse through my books and play with my hair
    My home is so clean, it shines like the sun
    Every corner’s been scrubbed, the laundry is done
    I glide out the door, my energy’s high
    I bid to my family, a loving goodbye
    I know they’ll all sail effortlessly through
    Excellence seems to follow them too!
    We’re always quite prompt to work and to school
    We have manners for miles, we know every rule
    People are always happy to greet us
    Those who don’t know us, wish they could meet us

  23. Elizabeth on May 12, 2011 at 9:12 am

    Always a bit late, here are my two lines

    I’ll pray that God is watching you read this poem from “Strictures and Structures”

    I come to the sound of my own soul singing from “Within The Poem”


  24. Linda Watskin on May 12, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    Here’s my line—

    “…crawled through a hole and disappeared.”

  25. barbara on May 13, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Ho. I saw the “closing shop” post, and missed the prompt. Well, if anyone else is late for the party, here are some lines:

    She didn’t pause for give and take but added: Fate

    used to be as easy as a chaise lounge in July

    The diva from a comic book the silly thing

    gave me a drag, drank down my drink and levetated back to work

    Kissed their ears the way a cat does rasping

    • Deb on May 15, 2011 at 6:01 pm

      I’m sorry I didn’t get a chance to include some of this in my kinda-centro. I always enjoy your language!

  26. Jason Riedy on May 13, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    Late, late, for this very important date.

    Some, um, well, not left-overs so much as not-well-enough-baked-overs from last month.

    “It’s just a blink apart from every day”

    “I need to dig out my bicycle now”

    “a hand slipping firmly off that side’s rail”

    “finding suddenly flat pavement asplay”

    I admit I’m still sitting on a few lines. They keep poking my butt. Maybe I’ll move on them…

    • Jason Riedy on May 13, 2011 at 10:46 pm

      BTW, if you use Twitter, an interesting source of lines:

    • Deb on May 15, 2011 at 6:02 pm

      Thanks, Jason! I’m sorry I didn’t use any of your lines, either, but I hope to come back to the well for future inspiration. Thanks for being a part of our circus life!