thinkwritten site icon


101 Poetry Prompts & Ideas for Writing Poems

' src=

Not sure what to write a poem about? Here’s 101 poetry prompts to get you started!

poetry writing prompts

We may receive a commission when you make a purchase from one of our links for products and services we recommend. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Thank you for support!

Sharing is caring!

These poetry prompts are designed to help you keep a creative writing practice. If you’re staring at a blank page and the words aren’t flowing, the creative writing prompts for poems can be a great way to get started!

New for 2023! Due to popular demand, I created a printable, ad-free version of these poetry prompts you can download to use at home or even in the classroom! Get them at our Etsy Shop .

Even if poetry isn’t your thing, you could always use these things to inspire other writing projects. Essays, journal entries, short stories, and flash fiction are just a few examples of ways this list can be used.

You may even find this list of creative poetry writing prompts helpful as an exercise to build your skills in descriptive writing and using metaphors!

Let’s get onto the list, shall we?

Here are 101 Poetry Prompts for Creative Writing

Most of these creative writing ideas are simple and open-ended. This allows you total creative freedom to write from these poetry prompts in your own unique style, tone, and voice.

If one poetry idea doesn’t appeal to you, challenge yourself to find parallels between the prompt and things that you do enjoy writing about!

1.The Untouchable : Something that will always be out of reach

2. 7 Days, 7 Lines : Write a poem where each line/sentence is about each day of last week

3. Grandma’s Kitchen : Focus on a single memory, or describe what you might imagine the typical grandmother’s kitchen to be like

4. Taste the Rainbow : What does your favorite color taste like?

5. Misfits: How it feels when you don’t belong in a group of others.

6. Stranger Conversations : Start the first line of your poem with a word or phrase from a recent passing conversation between you and someone you don’t know.

7. On the Field : Write from the perspective of a sports ball {Baseball, Soccer, Football, Basketball, Lacrosse, etc.} – think about what the sports ball might feel, see, hear, think, and experience with this poetry idea!

8. Street Signs: Take note of the words on signs and street names you pass while driving, walking, or riding the bus. Write a poem starting with one of these words you notice.

9. Cold water: What feelings do you associate with cold water? Maybe it’s a refreshing cold glass of water on a hot day, or maybe you imagine the feelings associated with being plunged into the icy river in the winter.

10. Ghostwriter: Imagine an invisible ghost picks up a pen and starts writing to you.

11. Lessons From Math Class: Write about a math concept, such as “you cannot divide by zero” or never-ending irrational numbers.

12. Instagram Wall: Open up either your own Instagram account or one of a friend/celebrity and write poetry based on the first picture you see.

13. Radio: Tune in to a radio station you don’t normally listen to, and write a poem inspired by the the first song or message you hear.

14. How To : Write a poem on how to do something mundane most people take for granted, such as how to tie your shoes, how to turn on a lamp, how to pour a cup of coffee.

15. Under 25 Words : Challenge yourself to write a poem that is no more than 25 words long.

16. Out of Order: Write about your feelings when there is an out of order sign on a vending machine.

17. Home Planet: Imagine you are from another planet, stuck on earth and longing for home.

18. Uncertainty : Think about a time in your life when you couldn’t make a decision, and write based on this.

19. Complete : Be inspired by a project or task be completed – whether it’s crossing something off the never-ending to-do list, or a project you have worked on for a long time.

20. Compare and Contrast Personality : What are some key differences and similarities between two people you know?

21. Goodbyes : Write about a time in your life you said goodbye to someone – this could be as simple as ending a mundane phone conversation, or harder goodbyes to close friends, family members, or former partners.

22. Imagine Weather Indoors : Perhaps a thunderstorm in the attic? A tornado in the kitchen?

23. Would You Rather? Write about something you don’t want to do, and what you would rather do instead.

24. Sound of Silence : Take some inspiration from the classic Simon & Garfunkel song and describe what silence sounds like.

25. Numbness : What’s it like to feel nothing at all?

26. Fabric Textures : Use different fiber textures, such as wool, silk, and cotton as a poetry writing prompt.

27. Anticipation : Write about the feelings you experience or things you notice while waiting for something.

28. Poison: Describe something toxic and its effects on a person.

29. Circus Performers: Write your poetry inspired by a circus performer – a trapeze artist, the clowns, the ringmaster, the animal trainers, etc.

30. Riding on the Bus : Write a poem based on a time you’ve traveled by bus – whether a school bus, around town, or a long distance trip to visit a certain destination.

31. Time Freeze : Imagine wherever you are right now that the clock stops and all the people in the world are frozen in place. What are they doing?

32. The Spice of Life : Choose a spice from your kitchen cabinet, and relate its flavor to an event that has happened recently in your daily life.

33. Parallel Universe : Imagine you, but in a completely different life based on making a different decision that impacted everything else.

34. Mad Scientist : Create a piece based on a science experiment going terribly, terribly wrong.

35. People You Have Known : Make each line about different people you have met but lost contact with over the years. These could be old friends, passed on family, etc.

36. Last Words : Use the last sentence from the nearest book as the inspiration for the first line of your poem.

37. Fix This : Think about something you own that is broken, and write about possible ways to fix it. Duct tape? A hammer and nails?

hammer poetry prompt idea

38. Suspicion : Pretend you are a detective and you have to narrow down the suspects.

39. Political News : Many famous poets found inspiration from the current politics in their time. Open up a newspaper or news website, and create inspired by the first news article you find.

40. The Letter D : Make a list of 5 words that start with all with the same letter, and then use these items throughout the lines of your verse. {This can be any letter, but for example sake: Daisy, Dishes, Desk, Darkness, Doubt}

41. Quite the Collection : Go to a museum, or look at museum galleries online. Draw your inspiration from collections of objects and artifacts from your favorite display. Examples: Pre-historic days, Egyptians, Art Galleries, etc.

42. Standing in Line : Think of a time you had to stand in line for something. Maybe you were waiting in a check-out line at the store, or you had to stand in line to enter a concert or event.

43. Junk Mail Prose: Take some inspiration from your latest junk mail. Maybe it’s a grocery store flyer announcing a sale on grapes, or an offer for a credit card.

44. Recipe : Write your poem in the form of a recipe. This can be for something tangible, such as a cake, or it can be a more abstract concept such as love or happiness. List ingredients and directions for mixing and tips for cooking up your concept to perfection.

45. Do you like sweaters? Some people love their coziness, others find them scratchy and too hot. Use your feelings about sweaters in a poem.

46. After Party : What is it like after all party guests go home?

47. Overgrown : Use  Little Shop of Horrors  for inspiration, or let your imagination run wild on what might happen if a plant or flower came to life or started spreading rapidly to take over the world.

48. Interference: Write a poem that is about someone or something coming in between you and your goals.

49. On Shaky Ground: Use an earthquake reference or metaphor in your poem.

50. Trust Issues : Can you trust someone you have doubted in the past?

51. Locked in a Jar: Imagine you are a tiny person, who has been captured and put into a jar for display or science.

52. Weirder Than Fiction: Think of the most unbelievable moment in your life, and write a poem about the experience.

53. Fast Food: Write a poem about fast food restaurants and experiences.

fast food writing prompt hamburger

54. Unemployed: Write a poem about quitting or being fired from a job you depended on.

55. Boxes: What kinds of family secrets or stories might be hiding in that untouched box in the attic?

56. No One Understands : Write about what it feels like when no one understands or agrees with your opinion.

57. Criminal Minds : Write a poem from the perspective of a high-profile criminal who is always on the run from law enforcement.

58. Marathon Runner : Write a poem about what training you might be doing to accomplish a difficult challenge in your life.

59. Trapped : Write about an experience that made you feel trapped.

60. Passing the Church : Write a poem about noticing something interesting while passing by a church near your home.

61. Backseat Driver: Write about what it’s like to be doing something in your life and constantly being criticized while trying to move ahead.

62. Luster: Create a descriptive poem about something that has a soft glow or sheen to it.

63. Clipboard: Write a poem about someone who is all business like and set in their ways of following a system.

64. Doctor: Write a poem about receiving advice from a doctor.

65. First Car : Write an ode to your first car

66. Life Didn’t Go As a Planned : Write about a recent or memorable experience when nothing went according to plan.

67. Architect : Imagine you are hired to design a building for a humanitarian cause you are passionate about.

68. The Crazy Cat Hoarder : Write about someone who owns far too many cats.

69. Queen : Write a poem from the perspective of a queen.

70. Movie Character : Think of a recent movie you watched, and create a poem about one character specifically, or an interaction between two characters that was memorable.

71. Potential Energy : Write about an experience where you had a lot of potential for success, but failed.

72. Moonlight : Write about an experience in the moonlight.

73. Perfection : Write about trying to always keep everything perfect.

74. You Are Wrong : Write a poem where you tell someone they are wrong and why.

75. Sarcasm : Write a poem using sarcasm as a form of illustrating your point.

76. Don’t Cry : Write a poem about how not to cry when it’s hard to hold back the tears.

77. Listen Up: Write a poem telling someone they are better than they think they are.

78. Flipside : Find the good in something terrible.

79. Maybe They Had a Reason : Write a poem about someone doing something you don’t understand, and try to explain what reasons they might have had.

80. How to Drive : Write a poem that explains how to drive to a teenager.

81. Up & Down the Steps: Write a poem that includes the motion of going up or down a staircase

82. Basket Case: Has there ever been a time when you thought you might lose your mind? Jot your feelings and thoughts down in verse form.

83. Lucky Guess:  Many times in our life we have to make a good guess for what is the best decision. Use this poetry idea to write about feelings related to guessing something right – or wrong.

84. Dear Reader:  What audience enjoys reading the type of poetry you like to write? Craft a note to your potential audience that addresses their biggest fears, hopes, and dreams.

85. All or Nothing : Share your thoughts on absolutist thinking: when one’s beliefs are so set in stone there are no exceptions.

86. Ladders in the Sky : Imagine there are ladders that take you up to the clouds. What could be up there? What feelings do you have about climbing the ladders, or is their a mystery as to how they got there in the first place?

ladder poetry prompt

87. Always On My Mind: Compose a poem about what it’s like to always be thinking about someone or something.

88. Paranoia : What would it be like if you felt like someone was watching you but no one believed you?

89. Liar, Liar: How would you react to someone who lied to you?

90. Secret Word: What’s the magic word to unlock someone’s access to something?

91. For What It’s Worth: Use a valuable object in your home as inspiration as a poetry prompt idea.

92. Coming Home to Secrets: Imagine a person who puts on a good act to cover up a secret they deal with at home.

93. Productivity: Talk about your greatest struggles with time management and organization.

94. Defying Gravity: Use words that relate to being weightless and floating.

95. Signs of the Times : How has a place you are familiar with changed over the past 10 years?

96. Sleepless Nights : What ideas and feelings keep you up at night? What’s it like when you have to wake up in the morning on a night you can’t sleep?

97. You Can’t Fire Me, I Quit : Use one of the worst job related memories you can think of as a creative writing prompt.

98. By George : You can choose any name, but think of 3-5 notable figures or celebrities who share a common first name, and combine their personalities and physical characteristics into one piece of poetry. For example: George Washington, George Clooney, George Harrison.

99. Shelter : Write a poem about a time you were thankful for shelter from a storm.

100. Cafeteria : Create a poem inspired by the people who might be eating lunch in a cafeteria at school or at a hospital.

101. Dusty Musical Instruments : Base your poem around the plight of a musician who hasn’t picked up the guitar or touched a piano in years.

Love these prompts? The printable, ad-free version of these poetry prompts can be used offline or in the classroom! Get them at our Etsy Shop .

There are unlimited possibilities for ways you can use these poem ideas to write poetry. Using a list like this can greatly help you with getting into the habit of writing daily – even when you don’t feel inspired to write.

While not every poem you write will be an award-winning masterpiece, using these poem starters as a regular exercise can help you better your craft as a writer.

I hope you enjoy these poetry prompts – and if you write anything you’d like to share inspired by these creative poetry writing prompts, let us know in the comments below – we love to see how others use writing ideas to create their own work!

And of course, don’t forget to get the ad-free poetry prompt cards printable version if you’d like to use these prompts offline, in the classroom or with your small group!

' src=

Chelle Stein wrote her first embarrassingly bad novel at the age of 14 and hasn't stopped writing since. As the founder of ThinkWritten, she enjoys encouraging writers and creatives of all types.

Similar Posts

7 Creative Writing Exercises For Writers

7 Creative Writing Exercises For Writers

42 Fantasy Writing Prompts & Plot Ideas

42 Fantasy Writing Prompts & Plot Ideas

108 Romance Writing Prompts & Love Story Ideas

108 Romance Writing Prompts & Love Story Ideas

300 Fun Writing Prompts for Kids: Story Starters, Journal Prompts & Ideas

300 Fun Writing Prompts for Kids: Story Starters, Journal Prompts & Ideas

365 Creative Writing Prompts

365 Creative Writing Prompts


I had a wonderful inspiration from prompt number 49 “On Shaky Ground,” although it’s not exactly about an earthquake. I wanted to share it on here, so I hope you enjoy it!

Title: “Shaking Ground”

The ground’s shaking My heart’s aching I’m getting dizzy My mind’s crazy

On shaking ground It’s like I’m on a battleground We’re all fighting for love Dirtying our white glove

The ground’s shaking My body’s quaking Love is so cruel Making me a fool

On shaking ground We are all love-bound Stuck in a crate Nobody can avoid this fate

The ground’s shaking We are all waking Opening our eyes Everyone dies

On shaking ground Our love is profound Although we are separate Better places await

The ground’s shaking Death’s overtaking Heaven is descending The world’s ending

On shaking ground In love we are drowned

Awesome interpretation Amanda! Thanks for sharing!

heyyy, I have written something regarding prompt 27 and 96 The Night Charms.

Do you dread the dark; Or do you adore the stars? Do you really think the fire place is that warm; Or you just envy the night charms? The skyline tries to match the stars’ sparkle, The sky gets dark, the vicinity gets darker. The “sun” has set for the day being loyal; These are now the lamps burning the midnight oil. The Eve so busy, that everyone forgets to praise its beauty. The sun has set without anyone bidding him an adieu, Failed to demonstrate its scintillating view. The moon being the epitome of perfection, Has the black spots, Depicting an episode of it’s dark past.

And I sit; I sit and wonder till the dawn. What a peaceful time it is, To have a small world of your own. Away from the chaos, I found a soul that was lost. So tired, yet radiant, Trying to be someone she’s not in the end. That bewitching smile held my hand, Carried me back to shore, letting me feel my feet in the sand. The waves moved to and fro, Whispering to me as they go, “Oh girl, my girl This is the soul you have within you, Never let it vanish, For it alters you into something good and something new, Don’t let the cruel world decide, Don’t let anyone kill that merry vibe.”

Then I saw my own soul fade, Fly into my heart, For what it was made. Oh dear lord, The night’s silence became my solace, My life lessons were made by the waves. Who am I? What have I done to myself? Many questions were answered in self reproach, The answers were still unspoken with no depth. Oh dear night, What have you done to me? Or should I thank you for putting a soul that I see. The nights spent later were now spectacular, My darkness somehow added some light to my life, Making it fuller… Everyday after a day, walking through the scorching lawns, I wait for the the dusk to arrive, and then explore myself till the dawn.

This is so amazing I ran out of words. Very lit thoughts beautifully penned. Keep writing like this dude.❤🌻

That is beautiful, it inspired me to write about my fears, thank you!!

Thank you for the inspiration! 😀 This was based of 21 and 77 (I think those were the numbers lol)

Goodbye to the days when we played together in the sun Goodbye to the smile on your face and to all of the fun I look at you, so dull and blue How long before I can say hello to the real you You are worth more than you think At the very least, you are to me Though there are greater things that wait for you than the least You are worthy of the most, the greatest of things If only goodbye could be ‘see you later’ I want to see the real you again To your suffering I don’t want to be just a spectator I want it all to end Goodbye to my only friend I want to heal you but I don’t know how I wish I had this all figured out Please come back to me I just want you to be free

Thank u so much im more inspired after seeing these creative ideas. 🤗

Glad they inspired you!

Thanks for sharing Amanda!

That was beautiful! I am a writer too! I actually just finished writing one but, it wasn’t from this website, just kind of something that’s been on my head for a while you know? Anyways, again, that was awesome! I am a Christian, and I love seeing people write about that kind of stuff! 🙂

I am jim from Oregon. I am also a writer, not very good but active. I am a Christian as well as you are. Sometimes it is hard to come up with something to write about.

All of a sudden, I have started to write poetry. Do you like all forms of writing? I would enjoy reading some of you work if you would you would like to s if you would like to send me some.

i have written one about frozen time:

my brother will be drawing, his pencil wont leave the sheet, my mother hearing the radio, today’s news on repeat. my sister, in fact, is making her bed, she’ll be making it still, till the last bug is dead. me, on the other hand, i’ll be visiting you, i’ll see you in action, doing the things that you do, i’ll be happy to see you, just a last time, i’ll kiss your still lips, and hold for a while. then i’ll take a plane to saudi, where i’ll see my dad, he’ll be swimming with turtles, he will not seem sad. i have lived on this earth, for 15 whole years, time for goodbye, with not a single tear.

hey beautifully expressed…!!!

Beautifully penned 🌼

I love it I tried one out myself as well Change

She sat looking out the window. The sound of the piano’s cheerful tune ringing out throughout the room. The sweet smell of burnt pine emanating from her fireplace. The sky is blue and the sun shines bright. She closes her eyes for a second. She opens them again. The window is broken and scattered on the ground. The piano sits covered in ashes, every symphony played now just a distant memory replaced with a discordant melody. The room smells of smoke and ash. The sky is dark and rain falls on the remnants of her home. Not a living thing in sight,not even her.

Nice one Amanda. kind of tells me the chronology of love and its eventualities.

such a dilightful poem, thanks for the word that made the day for me. you are such a good poet.

Omg! What!! This is amazing! I’d love to feature this piece on my blog I also love this blog post by, planning on putting the link in my next blog post so others can come over here to check it out! So helpful!

this is so great! I’ve been needing inspiration. this might work

Thank you so much for this article! I love the profundity and open-endedness of the prompts. Here is a poem I wrote, drawing inspiration from #56, “No One Understands.” I wrote this from the perspective of a psychic Arcturian Starseed in her teenage years and how the world perceives her spiritual connection; while at the same time hinting at the true meaning of her various baffling actions. Enjoy 🙂

Starseed – a poem on perspective

In the snow She stands alone Wrapped in shrouds of mystery Her gentle hand gloved with giving Caressing A violet stone

Math class is dismissed But there still she sits Speaking to the ceiling in tender tones A soft and healing resonance Murmuring sweetly of ascension to Another, dearer dimension

In homeroom Her classmate weeps Of missed planes and shattered dreams Quietly She strokes the hand of the suffering And whispers then of channeling Some celestial utopia called Arcturus Where she claims to have been.

Please feel free to let me know where I need to improve! I’m fourteen years old and only an amateur, so a few suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, love and light 🙂

#79 I don’t know why he was so mad Did he not get his mail Was he already mad Or did he only get bills

He swung his arm with force He caused a loud bang He hurt his own hand He left with some blood

He is the man that punched the mailbox His hand dripped blood on it He left it with a dent He left it alone after that

That’s great Michael, thank you for sharing your response to one of the prompts!

Awesome! That was simple and yet creative

Interesting tips and keywords for boosting inspiration. I’ve found some good topic for start writing. Thanks

sleepless nights (#96)

it’s never a strangled cry that drags me from my dreams, but a gentle whisper, there to nudge the socks off my feet, and settle me back into the sheets. i seem to wake before i’ve had a chance to fall to rest.

why is it that i can never sleep, but always dream?

sleepless nights rule my life and drag me by my toes, throwing me into a sky of black and blue. not a single star can break through this spillage. and i sit and wonder in a sea of sheets, rippling around me, why my mind can swim these dark, tangling waters and i never need to take a breath.

have you ever noticed how static-filled the dark is? because when i lay buried under these burdens and blankets, the world seems ready to crumble under my grasp.

i can’t sleep, but i can dream, of days when i wasn’t pulled struggling from bed but awoken into the light. i wonder how i ever survived the grainy sky’s midnight troubles, the oil spill of its thunderclouds, the sandpaper raspiness of the three a.m. earth against my throat.

oh, how i can never sleep in a world that threatens to fall apart.

this is amazing! i hope i can be this good one day

once again beautiful <3

Thank you so much for these prompts! They’re so thought-provoking.

You’re welcome! Glad you enjoy them!

Take me back to those days, When I was allowed to dream, Where no one use to scream. Take me back to those days, When I was a child, Where I never use to find reasons to smile. Take me Take back to those days, When I never used to lie, Where I never used to shy. Take me back those carefreee days, When I was far away from school days. Take me back to those days , where every one used to prase, no matter how foolish i behave. Take me back to those days, when i wasn’t stuck between fake people. Take me back to the day I was born, So that I could live those days again………….

so mine is basically a mix between 76 and 77… I made it for my literature club i recently began trying to make.

‘Listen to me’ Listen to me your words mean more than you think your opinion is worthy to be shared your songs are capable of being sung

Listen to me

your smile is bright your frown shows nothing more than you should be cared for like you care for us.

your laughter is delightful and so is everything else

dont let the past go hurt you find strength in the experience

are you listening to me?

can you here me?

because YOU matter

Nice, thank you for sharing!

Prompt #1 “Untouchable”

Grasping Reaching Searching for the untouchable The indescribable On the tip of my tongue My fingertips Close to my heart But warping my brain Yet understood in the depths of my soul Emotions undiscovered Words Unsaid Deep in the depths of my mind Hand outstretched Lingering on the edge Eyes wide open But somehow still blind Unattainable But still in the hearts of The Brave The Curious The Resilient They Seek the unseekable They pursue the unattainable Each man seeing it in a different aspect Each of their visions blurred Each distorted by Experiences Traumas Wishes Dreams Filtering what’s untouchable

Thank you, glad you enjoy it!

I had good inspiration from #51, locked in a jar. I used it more metaphorically instead of literally. So here it is: glass walls, lid screwed on tight, can’t escape, not even at night. From the inside, looking out, this is not who I’m supposed to be. I’m supposed to be bigger, I’m supposed to be free, not stuck in a jar, no room to breathe. I need to move, I need to soar, I need to be able to speak my opinions and more. So as I look down at my tiny self, in this glass jar, “let me out, I can’t take it anymore”, I say to the bigger me, the one ignoring my tiny pleas.

Just wanted to add a twist to this promt. I’m just a beginner in the art of poetry, but I tried. If anyone has any creative criticism, go ahead! #16: our of order

My brain is out of order My thoughts have filled it to the brim Of my deepest thoughts of who I am Who we are As people We are out of order Never focusing on what we want Our passions All we ever get is work on top of work Pushing us down and down Like a giant hand Squeezing us into the depths of our depressions Until We can do anything But take it Anymore

Thank you Ash for sharing your take on the prompt with us!

Thank you ASH for reminding we can do anything if we try

Was inspired by #77 listen up Listen up…….! When would you listen up! Seems! you have given up! No matter who shut you up! Stand straight and look up!

Look up don’t be discouraged Let you heart be filled with courage Listen up and be encouraged Let life be sweet as porridge

You might have been down Like you have no crown Because deep down You were shut down

There is still hope When there is life Yes! You can still cope If you can see the light Yes! Even in the night

Oh listen up! Please listen up and take charge, You are better than the best Listen up! And oh! Please listen up.

beautifully written!

I wrote a poem using prompt 21 and I’m so proud of it. Comment if you want me to post it🤓

I bet the poem you wrote about prompt 21 is really good. I would like to read it please.

Mental prison, what a way to be trapped, being hidden, being snapped,

Clear glass is all i feel, apart from people, I hope I heal, I will never be equal,

I am different I am hurt raging currents people put on high alert but no one cares

No one dreads many tears I only have so many more threads

One day I’ll be gone but no one would care I will run away from the death chair

But until then

Mental prison what a way to be trapped being hidden being snapped

One day this will all blow away someday I will be molded out of clay but until then I will be lead astray

This is so darn awesome. It’s so deep and evokes the deepest of feelings🥰

I wrote almost the same thing omg I’m turning it into a contest entry

Inspired by No. 1! I am completely new to poetry, but I love it so much already! Here it is.

Perfection is Untouchable-

Perfection waiting, out of reach

Will I never touch it?

It always remain


No matter how hard I try

I will never quite reach

It will always remain

Though many people have tried

And seemed to have come close

But perfection’s not the goal

‘Cause we can’t quite grasp it

Perfection will always be

For all eternity

Looks like you are off to a great start!

Of Course, Silly Billy Me

”Well shit, I guess I lost my opportunity” the youngster retort

You see, for him, it’s all about his hurt – but she’s so educated, knows more about the rules of English than the rest of us.

Thus, to me she said… You cannot use curse words in a court report… you need to paraphrase his quote.

Into her spastic face I smiled – and pled my case

If you were my English professor back in the day, I could only imagine how much further in life I would have been…

”Don’t you mean farther in life?”

Of course, silly billy me.

This poem is called Secret Keeper and was inspired by #92. I hope you like it.

Everyone has a secret, Whether it be their own, Or someone else’s, We all have one.

But what if, You met someone, Who had a secret so big, That telling anyone would lead to horrible things.

And what if, That person told someone, And what they told them, Was more horrible than anything they could have ever imagined.

What if, That person told everyone, And when the parents, Of the kid with the secret found out, They were furious.

What if, They kept doing horrible things, Even though everyone knew, Even though they knew it was wrong.

And finally, What if, No one ever helped, The little kid with the biggest secret.

On number 28 : Poision I wrote a poem for it and would like to share it. The poision of friends and love

Beaten,she lies there. For they may be mistaken. Laughter rings throughout the school halls; a pure disaster. The dissapearence of parents hast caused this yet no one stops it. “Your a disgrace!” She heard them say. While in place she cries “I don’t belong here! Perhaps im out of place..” But she is not misplaced rather.. Shes lost in space.

I miss when you called me baby And I was in your arms saftely I know we drive eachother crazy But I miss callin you my baby

Those restless nights when I couldn’t sleep You calmed me down with your technique Always reminded me I’m strong not weak If only I let you speak

My heart only beats for you My feelings for you only grew You understood what I was going through I will never regret knowing you

Your smile melted my heart I wish we could restart And I could be apart Of a man I see as a work of art!

Stary night painting poem I guess ill call it

I raised my paint brush to my canvas So I could help people understand this This feeling of emotion for this painting has spoken I see the light as opportunity As for the whole thing it symbolizes unity The swirls degnify elegance and uncertainty For this painting executes this perfectly Where as my paintings let me adress Everything I feel I need to express!

#56 WHITE NOISE Faded away In the background Unheard Not visible

Eardrums splitting from the screams Yet none seem to care Can even hear my cries for help? For I am screaming as loud as I can

Are you? For all we hear Are whispers in here

Fading away in the background Unheard, invisible Yet it’s there, not loud enough Not noticeable, but there White noise Blank and pure In the background Faded away, yet so clear.

Just need to listen So open your ears She’s screaming for help But it’s muted to your ears

So open ’em up And listen to the calls For faded away, in the background Not visible, but clear. White Noise. It’s there.

Hi guys, I’m kind of late joining in. I read the prompts and the poems posted and this community is a creative bunch. I liked #35 People You Have Known. I want to share it with you guys.

Bern, a friend from grade school was my seat mate as well Rob had always teased me so my young life was hell Neesa was pretty, she knew that she was my crush Miss Homel, our teacher was always in a rush Played ball with Buco and I got hit on my head Fell in love with Cia, dreamt of her in my bed Had a tattoo with Marcus and called it “The Day” Chub challenged me to eat two pies, I said, “No way” I had to go far away so I wrote to Charie In this new place I found a friend in Perry My Grandma Leng passed away, she was a doll My grumpy uncle, Uncle Zar was teased by all These people have touched my life for worse or better Won’t be forgotten, be remembered forever

I hope that you liked it. Thanks guys. Thanks Think Written.

#37 fix it Still new to poems, and I haven’t written one in a while. Criticism is welcome because I need some more inspiration since I haven’t been getting any.

This is the body repair shop where we fix humans that have stopped how may we help you?

the girl stumbled upon the front door and spilled her list of regrets out into the open

“we’re sorry, miss” “but i’m afraid your first kiss will just be a dear old reminisce”

“your heart is also one that cannot be mended” “for every shattered piece- their lives just simply ended” the sewing kit can’t sew the fragments of her heart back because there were way too many to backtrack

she cried her heart out and it went “plop!” her tears like a river and like a lightbulb flickering its last light she too, took her last breath and was put to death

This is the body repair shop where we fix humans that have stopped “it seems we have failed again today” “sorry we’ll just try harder again another day”

I did poetry prompt #7. I wrote about the street I grew up on. Luverne Luverne, I moved onto you at the age of three. We like to race up and down your pavement road, either biking or running. You keep safe the house that I grew up in, one that has six humans and three dogs. You shelter other houses, too, that hold family friends and best friends to last a lifetime.

Luverne, we love you.

-Margaret McMahon

I was inspired by the prompt poison. Monster Roses are beautiful and delicate, but flawed.

Every rose has thorns that cause you to bleed.

Its innocence and beauty draws you in.

Only then when you touch it, it poisons you.

Am I really such an ugly monster, that plants pain an watches it spread?

I would say no.

Wouldn’t we all?

But maybe, just maybe a rose doesn’t notice it’s thorns.

-Lilliana Pridie

You said you’re only just starting?! That was sooo good! No criticism here. 🙂

Sorry, that was meant for “Ash” but yours was amazing too! 🙂

Prompt number 8: Street signs STOP Stop look and listen Stop at the corner Stop at the red light Stop for pedestrians Stop for cyclists Stop for animals Stop doing that Stop drop and roll Stop doing something else Stop shouting Stop whispering Stop talking Stop being quiet Stop posting cute cat videos Stop forgetting your appointments Stop making plans without me Stop eating all the yummies Stop running Stop the insanity Stop shopping Stop the never-ending commentary in my head Stop stopping Stop

Thanks for making this site and all its suggestions and especially this space to post our work, available!

I wrote from prompt #72 about moonlight. Shining down like a spotlight, Illuminating everything around you. The pure white light, Paint your surroundings in a soft glow. The round ball in the sky, speckled with craters like the freckles on your face. Looking down upon the sleeping earth, A nightlight for those still awake, a nightlight for you. Guides you, pulls you, lulls you towards it. It caresses your face with the light, casting away the shadows of the night.

I liked it I just wrote a small poem dedicated to my tutor and tutor just loved it .I used 21 good bye . I liked it really.😊

I just took up writing so bear with me.

Based on #72 “Moonlight”

A full bed Just the left side filled Soft, cold, baby blue sheets wrap around bare feet

She sweetly invites herself in Dressing the dark in a blue hue through cypress filled air, like 5 A.M. drives in January on the misty Northern coast.

Damp hair dances across grey skin, Waltzing with the breeze to Radiohead’s “How to Disappear Completely”

Euphoria slow dances with Tranquility Heavy eyes give in to sleep

Ladder to the Sky I want to climb the ladder to the sky I’m sure all would be well and that I could fly The ladder would be sturdy but still give me a fright Because looking down I’ll realized I’ve climbed many heights The higher I climb the greater the fall The greater the fall, the greater the sprawl But if i ever get to the sky up high I would be sure to hug you and say “goodbye” Once I’ve climbed the ladder I’ll know Sometimes its okay to look far down below Life is full of failure but soon I’ll find Happiness is a place, and not of the mind We all have ladders to climb and lives to live We all have a little piece of us that we can give Because when we climb that ladder to the sky We should think “No, life never passed me by”

Hi Ray, I love your piece.It gives one courage to face the challenges of live and move on.

Thanks for sharing the prompts Chelle Stein. I wrote this sometimes ago before coming to this site and I believed prompts #1 and #88 inspired my writing it. kindly help me vet it and give your criticism and recommendation. It is titled “SHADOW”.

My shadow your shadow My reflection your reflection My acts your acts

No one sees me,no one sees you Programmed by the Ubiquitous, To act as our bystander in realism

Virtuous iniquitous rises on that day To vindicate to incriminate My deeds your deeds.

Thanks for the seemingly endless amounts of writing prompts. I’ve been working on a poem, but it isn’t much.

She’s got my head spinning, Around and around; She’s all I think about, I can’t help but wondering, Does she feel the same?

Of course not, I’m just a fool; I’m nothing special, Just another person; Bland and dull.

How could a girl like her, love a guy like me? But the way she looks at me, Her smile, I can’t help but to feel flustered; Is this just my imagination?

It must be.

Wow! That’s exactly how I feel! Amazing poem!

Thanks so much, I’m glad you like it. 🙂

A massive thank you to for these amazing prompts. Some of these prompts have now formed the basis of my upcoming poetry collection (Never Marry a Writer) scheduled for release on January 1 2021. I will also be leaving a “Thank you” message for this website in the acknowledgements section. You have inspired a whole poetry collection out of nowhere which is highly commendable. So booktiful that!

That is wonderful news!

So I didn’t use any of the prompts but I wanted some feedback on this; it’s not great but I’m working on improving my writing skills

I am a girl who is broken easily and loves music I wonder if things will ever be normal again I hear light screaming through the darkness I want freedom from the chains trapping me in my fear I am a girl who is broken easily and loves music

I pretend to float in the ocean, letting the waves carry me away from reality I feel a presence of hope like a flame on my bare skin I touch the eye of a storm, grasping the stillness it brings I worry about wars that a spreading like wildfires I cry when I’m not with the people I love I am a girl who is broken easily and loves music

I understand feeling hopeless when you have no control over what is happening I say our differences make us special I dream to be a nurse, to help others when they can’t help themselves I try to do my best in everything I hope that all mankind will stop fighting and live in peace I am a girl who is broken easily and loves music






I wrote a poem based on #101.

Thank you so much for the inspiration!!

And then it was there. What I had been missing. What is it? You may ask. Well, it’s quite simple actually. It’s the joy of music. It’s the joy of sitting down and making music. It’s the joy you feel when you look up at people admiring you. The joy you see in peoples’ eyes. I don’t know why I ever stopped that. The piano sat on the stage. Dusty and untouched. It’d been decades since I’ve seen it. I haven’t come to this stage since I lost her. After the concert. The last time I ever heard her voice. And yet here I am years and years later. Knowing why I haven’t been happy in so long. Of course pain is always gonna be there, But as I played a soft note on the piano, All of it seemed to disappear. It was as if all the weight on my shoulders got lifted. The melodious notes resonated around the hall. And for a few moments, I forgot about all the pain. I forgot about the tears. I forgot about the heartache. And as the last notes echoed around the hall, I was truly happy.

Prompt #92: Coming home with secrets

My mother’s radio sits in the balcony And it greets me with electric static Coming to this sheltering home is somewhat problematic Cause the walls are too thin, and it’s back to reality. Back to the running water that conceals the noise of cracks Crumbling behind my peeling mask, holding my face with wax An unraveled thread masking the makeup smile of a wakeup call That runs down to my chin and I keep under wraps. I take invitations to the mall, yet the space around me seems so small Nevertheless, I show my teeth with a big, shiny grin And suck a trembling breath through their thin slit Happy to wear tight jeans, to stop me from an embarrassing fall. The bath hurts on my skin, but even more to protect screams from the halls My head floats in the water, but feels trapped in its walls It cracks my head open with all these secrets inside me Before a blink of an eye, to my room I’d already flee. Not to the radio playing static or streets that won’t let me be But to under the blankets, where no one can really see The struggle to be a walking, talking, breathing secret That was thrown to the ocean in a bottle, wishing to be free. However, the words untold keep coming like ever so frequent Like adrenalized filled cops in pursue of an escapee delinquent All the more, my doppelganger and I have come to an agreement To take these secrets to our grave, that we nowadays call home.

Recipe for Happiness

Start with friendship, Then add time, A dash of humor, And forgotten binds. Mix it up, Till blended well, And make sure, To remember the smell. Put that bowl, To the side, Grab a new one, Add grateful sighs. Then add family, And a smile, Then sit back, And mix awhile. To that bowl, Add a laugh, A cheerful cry, And blissful past. Whip until, There’s heavy peaks, Then pour in, What we all seek. Combine the two, Then mix it well, Spray the pan, And pour it out. Cherish the memory, The beautiful scent, Of unity, And happiness.

My mother died when I was younger so this poem is about me sitting on the lawn at night shortly after she passed away. I was imagining better times, which is why in my poem I talk about how the girl is imagining ‘walking on the moon’ and she is gripping the grass tight and trying to remember the warmth of her mothers palms.

Sitting in the blue black grass She’s walking on the moon Watching specks of silver dance To the mellow tune Her fingers gripping the grass so tight She can almost feel The warmth of her mothers palms

The winds cold fingers

The winds cold fingers Tousle with my hair Loosening the soil My sobs are carried away on the wind

I would love to share this list (credited to you) with students participating in a virtual library program on poetry. Would that be possible/acceptable? These are great!

Wow! Thank you so much for all these awesome prompts! I’ve written two poems already!

Prompt #1 AND #15, untouchable and less than 25 words. i’m lowk popping off??

Apollo Commands the sun, which squints so brightly, scorches and freckles. i want her hand on mine. searing pain fears, still i reach out, and bubble.

I looked at the word “Duct tape” And thought about it. Its not anywhere in this poem at all but it inspired it yk?

Feathers are Soft

Feathers are soft People aren’t

Plushies are soft People aren’t

Pillows are soft People aren’t

People are mean Not nice Not joyful

well my poem is only loosely based on the second prompt because I found I had too much to say about Sundays. I would love to share it with you but these comments don’t support links.

Inspired by number 55 in list of poetry suggestions. Poem to song guitar chords. —————————————————-

Carnegie Hall

D I was feeling ecstatic G when I went to the attic A and found my auld busking D guitar

D But I felt consternation G I disturbed hibernation A at first it seemed quite D bazaar

D When I blew off the dust G it smelt like old must A but t’was time to give it a D bar

D It was then I heard flapping G which sounded like clapping A my first ever round of D applause

D It stayed with the beat G while tapping my feet A I kept playing despite all my D flaws

D I took early retirement G though not a requirement A “Bad Buskers” all get D menopause

D I’m strumming the strings G and the echo it rings A but no jingling of coins as they D fall

D So I play here alone G as to what I was prone A never made it to Carnegie D Hall

D Time to call it a day G as they used to say A for no encores or no curtain D call

D There’s a butterfly G in my guitar

D There’s a butterfly G in my guitar.

Finn Mac Eoin

23rd July 2022

I love this Finn, where can we listen to your song?

Hello I wrote this in remberence of 9/11. Its now sitting in ground zero. A ordinary day to start  Same as any other Dad goes off to work again, Child goes with their mother. Vibrant busy city,  busses, cars galore Workers in the offices, from bottom to top floor. Throughout our life situations Hard times often do arise, Unfortunatly we never think of saying last goodbyes. That’s exactly what happened on September 11th 2001 A day that turned the world so cold When tragedy begun. Twin towers has exploded Co ordinate attacks, Al-Qaeda behind the planes That seemed to be hijacked. Thousands were killed instantly Some lives hang by a thread, Calls were made to loved ones Onlookers face of dread. Fears & screams while running As smoke fills up the air, News reports on live tv Helplessly they stare. On the news we hear the voices of all who are caught inside, Lying next to injured ones Or sadly ones who died. One man makes a phone call My darling wife it’s me, I’m sorry that I upset you And that we disagreed. My offices have been attacked they’re crumbling to the ground, A massive explosion hit our floor then instantly no sound. If I do not make it I’m stating from the heart, I love you darling, & in your life I’m glad to play a part. Tell the kids daddy loves them Continue well at school, Stand up for all your beliefs Don’t be taken for a fool. The wife is crying down the line Darling please don’t go, I love you darling so so much I’ve always told you so. He replied my darling im feeling really kind of weak, Breathlessly he’s coughing, he can hardly speak. If you ever need me just look up to the stars, I will hear your voices And heal up any scars. Suddenly all was quiet The wife screams down the fone, Darling can you hear me, don’t leave me here alone. The towers live on tv start to crumble to the ground, Clouds of smoke then fill the air The world in shock no sound. Crying at the images of all who has lost their lives , Mums,dad’s , Nan’s & grandads, husbands & wives. Rescue teams included and all those left behind To All who were among them,  all who did survive, All who were injured All who sadly died. Never in this lifetime that day will be the same For ground zero holds the memories Of every single name.

Those hero’s on that awful day who never thought about their life Who fought to save the innocent To keep each sole alive Those who were pulled to safety Those we lost in vein, Never be forgotten The pain will still remain We will never forget that tragedy For the days will never be the same. But may I say with all my heart In God we put our faith United we stand For eternity were safe Amen

This is a beautifully sad poem. You really wrote your way into my heart. <3

I wrote a poem inspired by number 72. Not really sticking to what it said but thought this was kinda close to what it said…

After dusk, the almost eternal night. The dark, winter sky, full of millions of tiny stars. The sky, a color of blue that seems darker than black.

Sunset, full of an array of colors. Purple, orange, pink, and yellow. Nearly all dark blue.

Right as dawn appears, practically the same sunset hours later. Light wispy clouds fill the sky. Orange, pink, and light blue diffuse in the sky as the sun awakens

Wrote one based off the recipe one (I don’t remember which number)

From the Kitchen of: any teenager ever For: Disaster Ingredients: Social anxiety Existential dread A crush Zero sense of self worth A single class together And no social cues

Steps: (Warning: Do NOT do this if your crush is not single) You’re going to try to talk to your crush. Just say hi. If that doesn’t work, don’t go forward with the rest of these steps. Once you’ve talked to your crush, overthink every single thing you said to them. Do it. Then you’re going to decide you’re stupid for overthinking it. Next, you’re going to wait until they begin speaking to you on their own accord. If they don’t, overthink some more. One day you will think your crush is waving to you in the hallway. They won’t be. They’ll be waving to their friends behind you. Play it cool and pretend you’re doing the exact same thing. Run into the bathroom and cringe at yourself. Keep talking to them and try to partner up with them for a project. If they say no, don’t continue further; you’ll only embarrass yourself. If they say yes, say you need their number for the project. Call them “about the project” and eventually segway into other topics. Continue doing this until you guys eventually call all the time for no reason. Ask them out. If they say no, do not, I repeat, do not act like it was a dare or a joke. It ruins everything. Say “oh okay. Well, can we still be friends?” and continue from that point. If they say yes, go on a date with them outside of school before asking them to be your partner. Eventually break up and either get your heartbroken or break someone else’s heart.

And that is how you make an average teenage disaster. Enjoy!

Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Writing Forward

100 Poetry Prompts

by Melissa Donovan | Jan 24, 2023 | Poetry Prompts | 10 comments

poetry prompts

100 poetry prompts to motivate and inspire you.

My first love in writing was poetry. In my early teens, writing poetry was a creative and cathartic way to explore my ideas and vent my emotions. Writing poetry was accessible — all I needed was some paper and a pen. It didn’t even require a huge investment of time. I scrawled words onto the page as fast as they flew through my mind, often writing a poem in just a few minutes. It was an exhilarating and satisfying way to express myself.

In time, I learned that poetry had many benefits beyond personal expression. I found myself searching for the perfect meaning, rhyme, and meter in my word choices. I counted out syllables and contemplated line breaks. I experimented with form and structure.

It wasn’t just about dumping my thoughts and emotions onto paper anymore. Writing poetry got me thinking about language. It made me aware of writing as a craft, not just as a form of self-expression or communication.

To this day, I find that there are some aspects of writing that are best learned through the study and practice of poetry, and poetry prompts can spark an idea that inspires a poem.

After all, the blank page can be intimidating. If we establish some constraints (such as writing a particular form of poetry) or put some guidelines in place (writing about a particular topic), the blank page often becomes less overwhelming.

  • Write a poem about colors without ever naming any colors in the poem.
  • Write a poem that tells a story.
  • Use the following words in a poem: under, thrust, harbor, wind, prance, fall.
  • Write a poem about the following image: an empty stadium with litter strewn about and one sneaker on the stadium stairs.
  • Write three haiku .
  • Write a poem about your first friend.
  • Write a poem that could be the lyrics to a song.
  • Use the following words in a poem: fire, spice, burn, chill, tangled.
  • Write a poem about the following image: an elderly couple lying in lawn chairs, looking at the stars from their backyard.
  • Write a poem in iambic pentameter (each line is five metrical feet, each foot consists of an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable: da DUM da DUM da DUM da DUM da DUM).
  • Write a poem about a wild animal.
  • Write a poem that contains dialogue.
  • Use the following words in a poem: waves, cliffs, dance, pound, rise.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a person kneeling at the edge of a lake, peering into the water.
  • Write a sonnet .
  • Write a poem about garbage (waste).
  • Write a poem that has a perfect rhyme at the end of each line.
  • Use the following words in a poem: dirt, squirm, fingers, sprout, shine.
  • Write a poem about the following image: an old, dilapidated barn with a caved-in roof and rotting walls.
  • Write a sestina .
  • Write a poem about the cosmos.
  • Write a poem that contains a surprising twist.
  • Use the following words in a poem: feet, bees, violet, moss, clunk.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a person (or animal) looking out a fogged-up window on a snowy day.
  • Write a blackout poem (start with a page of printed text and selectively black-out words; the remaining, unredacted text is the poem).
  • Write a poem about your country, city, or state.
  • Write a poem that contains no adverbs or adjectives.
  • Use the following words in a poem: hunger, curl, click, drill, run.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a ladder leaning against the side of a massive tree.
  • Write an ode (a tribute to someone or something).
  • Write a poem about your greatest accomplishment, personal or professional.
  • Write a poem that does not contain any rhymes.
  • Use the following words in a poem: cotton, float, foam, fizz, glam.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a bag of groceries sitting on the ground in a parking lot.
  • Write a palindrome poem .
  • Write a poem about your deepest fear, or write about courage.
  • Write a poem that contains six numbers but not the number six.
  • Use the following words in a poem: bow, shoulder, sprawl, whisper, brush.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a table piled with delicious food.
  • Write a tanka (five lines, with the following syllabic pattern: 5-7-5-7-7).
  • Write a poem about dancing.
  • Write a poem that engages each of the five senses: sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch.
  • Use the following words in a poem: spin, calculate, lie, march, retreat.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a phoenix rising from the ashes.
  • Write a rondel .
  • Write a poem about your future.
  • Write a poem that uses an ABABB rhyme scheme.
  • Use the following words in a poem: hail, port, send, kneel, salute.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a mountain range seen from a great distance.
  • Write an acrostic poem (the first letters of each line spell out a word).
  • Write a poem about the weather.
  • Write a poem that contains internal rhymes but no end rhymes.
  • Use the following words in a poem: meet, time, basket, neon, puddle.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a wild baby animal crouching in the brush, watching its mother from a distance.
  • Write a concrete (shape) poem (a poem that forms a shape on the page, which can be simple, abstract, or complex).
  • Write a poem about a momentous, life-changing event.
  • Write a poem that has exactly one hundred words.
  • Use the following words in a poem: book, carpet, stick, hide, wander.
  • Write a poem about the following image: an assembly line in a factory that produces home-assistant robots.
  • Write a poem that has at least four instances of repetition.
  • Write a poem about entertainment.
  • Write a poem that contains a running metaphor.
  • Use the following words in a poem: satellite, bunker, can, water, dig.
  • Write a poem about the following image: unusual footprints on a trail in the forest.
  • Write a ghazal .
  • Write a poem about childhood.
  • Write a poem that explores the concept of duality.
  • Use the following words in a poem: motherboard, lava, smolder, flow, sear.
  • Write a poem about the following image: gum, mirror, pen, speak, fan.
  • Write a list poem (for example, a poem that is also a grocery list).
  • Write a poem about the most thrilling experience you’ve ever had.
  • Write a poem that is set in a particular time and place.
  • Use the following words in a poem: lavender, horn, gold, hooves, trot.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a notebook that is partially burnt.
  • Write a prose poem (a poem written in paragraphs rather than in verse).
  • Write a poem about lacking something essential.
  • Write a poem that is abstract or open to interpretation.
  • Use the following words in a poem: barn, skyscraper, bicycle, climb, stack.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a crew of workers eating lunch.
  • Write a poem of three stanzas, each with three lines, and include the number “three” somewhere in the poem.
  • Write a poem about a journey.
  • Write a poem that includes onomatopoeia (words that sound like what they mean — for example, hiss ).
  • Use the following words in a poem: drink, desire, switch, swell, relish.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a polar bear on a tropical island.
  • Write a rondelet .
  • Write a poem about an ordinary day.
  • Write a poem that includes at least three instances of alliteration, including one each of assonance and consonance.
  • Use the following words in a poem: buckle, bend, kick, pot, shift.
  • Write a poem about the following image: an empty raft floating down a river.
  • Write a limerick (five lines with rhyme scheme AABBA and a naughty attitude).
  • Write a poem about building something.
  • Write a poem that contains a pun.
  • Use the following words in a poem: squeeze, type, mission, gate, blast.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a bird soaring through sky.
  • Write a cinquain (five lines, with two syllables in the first line, four in the second, six in the third, eight in the fourth, and two syllables in the final line).
  • Write a poem about gaining something you’ve never had before.
  • Write a poem that is optimistic and hopeful.
  • Use the following words in a poem: airplane, jungle, needle, hike, signal.
  • Write a poem about the following image: a child exiting the library with a stack of books.
  • Write a magic 9 poem (nine lines with rhyme scheme ABACADABA).

Did These Poetry Prompts Inspire You?

Which of these poetry prompts inspired you? Were you moved to write a poem? How often do you write poetry? Do you regularly use poetry prompts? What’s your favorite thing about writing poetry?

Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below, and keep writing poetry.


Yes No Wheel

I love these poetry prompts! They’re really inspiring and I’m looking forward to trying out a few of them.

Melissa Donovan

Thanks! I’m glad you love them!

V.M. Sang

Thanks for this. It’s just what I need. In December I decided to write a poem a day for a year. So far I’ve managed it;some long, some short (haiku, limericks, or just a short 4 line poem). I now have almost 60 poems! My idea is to publish them in 2 books January to June, and July to December so people can read a poem a day. I’ve written poetry since my teens, like you, but sadly, most have been lost. I wrote some more, and just before Christmas, they were released as a book. It made a change from novels.

What an exciting project: a poem a day. I like it!

jo Blackwood

that was a great thought out prompt list thank you for your time and yes inspired and made notes as i went along

You’re welcome! Thanks for commenting.


I stumbled across these poetry prompts today and am really excited to use some of them to create my own poems. Thank you so much for sharing.

I’m glad these prompts inspired you! Good luck!

Stefani Christenot

I want to try each one of these. YAY!! Love this list, gonna go and journal now. Thank a bunch….

You’re welcome! Have fun!

Submit a Comment Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed .

writers creed

Subscribe and get The Writer’s Creed graphic e-booklet, plus a weekly digest with the latest articles on writing, as well as special offers and exclusive content.

creative writing prompts

Recent Posts

  • Storytelling Exercise: Process
  • Creating Authentic Character Relationships
  • Types of Rhymes in Poetry
  • Punctuation Marks: Parentheses
  • From Ready, Set, Write: Getting Ready to Write

Write on, shine on!

Pin It on Pinterest


22 Poetry Prompts to Help You Write Your Next Great Poem

While there is so much joy associated with writing, there is one pitfall that we all fall prey to—the dreaded writer’s block. It can strike at any moment and fill our hearts with frustration. But never fear! Sometimes, all we need is a small spark of inspiration. Poetry prompts can be a great way to get the creative juices flowing after a dry spell. 

If nothing else, it might be what prompts you to start putting pen to paper again. Even if you’re not always sure where a prompt or writing session will lead, try and choose a prompt or two and just start writing. It might start you down the path to your next major breakthrough. 

I hope these prompts help you focus and get excited about your poetic journey. Happy writing: 

1. Choose one of your five senses. Write a poem that focuses on your chosen sense.

2. write a poem inspired by a color., 3. write a poem based on something that happened to you this week. it could be something life-changing or something seemingly ordinary. tune into that moment and paint a story about it., 4. listen to one of your favorite songs and write a poem directly after based on the feelings and emotions it brought about in you. let music inspire poetry., 5. write about a lesson that you recently learned. , 6. think of a friend or family member who has played a huge role in your life. write a poem about the relationship. , 7. write a poem about the life advice you would give to your younger self. , 8. write about traveling—whether it’s taking a road trip or flying in a plane or spending the afternoon on a train. write about the feelings you experience while being en route to somewhere new or familiar. , 9. recall a favorite holiday memory and tell your readers about it. , 10. create a gallery of your heart. take readers on a guided tour of what they might see there. , 11. recall one of the strangest dreams you’ve ever had and write about how it made you feel or write it out in as much detail as you can remember. , 12. write about a time that your illusions of someone or something were shattered. , 13. write about a favorite childhood toy, movie, book, etc. and tie it back to the present day. , 14. you are renovating a home. imagine that you are this home. what serves as your foundation what are you working on fixing what needs to be replaced and what makes your house a home describe., 15. write a haiku inspired by an element of nature. (haikus are three lines. the first line has five syllables, the second line has seven syllables, and the third line has five syllables)., 16. write a poem where you are observing another time period as a detached observer. (this could be a time from your past or from another decade or era)., 17. write a poem from the perspective of your favorite pet. , 18. imagine that you switched places with someone for a day. (like in freaky friday). what would you learn from the experience , 19. write a piece about body positivity, as though you are looking into the mirror and speaking to your reflection. , 20. if you could freeze time in one moment of your life, what would it be write a poem in honor of that memory. , 21. imagine you are on a run through nature. describe your inner dialogue as you run through the trail at sunrise. what do you reflect on as you run , 22. has there ever been a time when you felt like the hero of your life how about the villain write yourself as the hero, then write yourself as the villain. paint the perspectives of each and explore the different aspects of the story from each lens. .

Have you written a masterpiece yet? I’m sure you are well on your way to a creative breakthrough. I hope you enjoyed this exercise and the opportunity to try your hand at a few different topics. 

Feel free to leave your poetry prompted poems in the comments for us to check out together. Also, if you have any prompts you would like to share, leave us a comment and let us know. Nothing is better than coming together as a group and inspiring some great writing! 


person sitting at a table writing

Writing Tips: How to Write Poems on Sensitive Content

poem writing questions

Writing Tips: How to Incorporate Illustrations into Your Poetry

poem writing questions

5 Poetry Prompts for Women’s Equality Day

Holiday Giving: Get 10% off gifted courses and course credit! Learn more »

To learn how to write a poem step-by-step, let’s start where all poets start: the basics.

This article is an in-depth introduction to how to write a poem. We first answer the question, “What is poetry?” We then discuss the literary elements of poetry, and showcase some different approaches to the writing process—including our own seven-step process on how to write a poem step by step.

So, how do you write a poem? Let’s start with what poetry is.

What Poetry Is

It’s important to know what poetry is—and isn’t—before we discuss how to write a poem. The following quote defines poetry nicely:

“Poetry is language at its most distilled and most powerful.” —Former US Poet Laureate Rita Dove

Poetry Conveys Feeling

People sometimes imagine poetry as stuffy, abstract, and difficult to understand. Some poetry may be this way, but in reality poetry isn’t about being obscure or confusing. Poetry is a lyrical, emotive method of self-expression, using the elements of poetry to highlight feelings and ideas.

A poem should make the reader feel something.

In other words, a poem should make the reader feel something—not by telling them what to feel, but by evoking feeling directly.

Here’s a contemporary poem that, despite its simplicity (or perhaps because of its simplicity), conveys heartfelt emotion.

Poetry is Language at its Richest and Most Condensed

Unlike longer prose writing (such as a short story, memoir, or novel), poetry needs to impact the reader in the richest and most condensed way possible. Here’s a famous quote that enforces that distinction:

“Prose: words in their best order; poetry: the best words in the best order.” —Samuel Taylor Coleridge

So poetry isn’t the place to be filling in long backstories or doing leisurely scene-setting. In poetry, every single word carries maximum impact.

Poetry Uses Unique Elements

Poetry is not like other kinds of writing: it has its own unique forms, tools, and principles. Together, these elements of poetry help it to powerfully impact the reader in only a few words.

The elements of poetry help it to powerfully impact the reader in only a few words.

Most poetry is written in verse , rather than prose . This means that it uses line breaks, alongside rhythm or meter, to convey something to the reader. Rather than letting the text break at the end of the page (as prose does), verse emphasizes language through line breaks.

Poetry further accentuates its use of language through rhyme and meter. Poetry has a heightened emphasis on the musicality of language itself: its sounds and rhythms, and the feelings they carry.

These devices—rhyme, meter, and line breaks—are just a few of the essential elements of poetry, which we’ll explore in more depth now.

Understanding the Elements of Poetry

As we explore how to write a poem step by step, these three major literary elements of poetry should sit in the back of your mind:

  • Rhythm (Sound, Rhyme, and Meter)
  • Literary Devices

1. Elements of Poetry: Rhythm

“Rhythm” refers to the lyrical, sonic qualities of the poem. How does the poem move and breathe; how does it feel on the tongue?

Traditionally, poets relied on rhyme and meter to accomplish a rhythmically sound poem. Free verse poems—which are poems that don’t require a specific length, rhyme scheme, or meter—only became popular in the West in the 20th century, so while rhyme and meter aren’t requirements of modern poetry, they are required of certain poetry forms.

Poetry is capable of evoking certain emotions based solely on the sounds it uses. Words can sound sinister, percussive, fluid, cheerful, dour, or any other noise/emotion in the complex tapestry of human feeling.

Take, for example, this excerpt from the poem “Beat! Beat! Drums!” by Walt Whitman:

elements of poetry: sound

Red — “b” sounds

Blue — “th” sounds

Green — “w” and “ew” sounds

Purple — “s” sounds

Orange — “d” and “t” sounds

This poem has a lot of percussive, disruptive sounds that reinforce the beating of the drums. The “b,” “d,” “w,” and “t” sounds resemble these drum beats, while the “th” and “s” sounds are sneakier, penetrating a deeper part of the ear. The cacophony of this excerpt might not sound “lyrical,” but it does manage to command your attention, much like drums beating through a city might sound.

To learn more about consonance and assonance, euphony and cacophony, and the other uses of sound, take a look at our article “12 Literary Devices in Poetry.”

It would be a crime if you weren’t primed on the ins and outs of rhymes. “Rhyme” refers to words that have similar pronunciations, like this set of words: sound, hound, browned, pound, found, around.

Many poets assume that their poetry has to rhyme, and it’s true that some poems require a complex rhyme scheme. However, rhyme isn’t nearly as important to poetry as it used to be. Most traditional poetry forms—sonnets, villanelles , rimes royal, etc.—rely on rhyme, but contemporary poetry has largely strayed from the strict rhyme schemes of yesterday.

There are three types of rhymes:

  • Homophony: Homophones are words that are spelled differently but sound the same, like “tail” and “tale.” Homophones often lead to commonly misspelled words .
  • Perfect Rhyme: Perfect rhymes are word pairs that are identical in sound except for one minor difference. Examples include “slant and pant,” “great and fate,” and “shower and power.”
  • Slant Rhyme: Slant rhymes are word pairs that use the same sounds, but their final vowels have different pronunciations. For example, “abut” and “about” are nearly-identical in sound, but are pronounced differently enough that they don’t completely rhyme. This is also known as an oblique rhyme or imperfect rhyme.

Meter refers to the stress patterns of words. Certain poetry forms require that the words in the poem follow a certain stress pattern, meaning some syllables are stressed and others are unstressed.

What is “stressed” and “unstressed”? A stressed syllable is the sound that you emphasize in a word. The bolded syllables in the following words are stressed, and the unbolded syllables are unstressed:

  • Un• stressed
  • Plat• i• tud• i•nous
  • De •act•i• vate
  • Con• sti •tu• tion•al

The pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables is important to traditional poetry forms. This chart, copied from our article on form in poetry , summarizes the different stress patterns of poetry.

2. Elements of Poetry: Form

“Form” refers to the structure of the poem. Is the poem a sonnet, a villanelle, a free verse piece, a slam poem, a contrapuntal, a ghazal, a blackout poem , or something new and experimental?

Form also refers to the line breaks and stanza breaks in a poem. Unlike prose, where the end of the page decides the line breaks, poets have control over when one line ends and a new one begins. The words that begin and end each line will emphasize the sounds, images, and ideas that are important to the poet.

To learn more about rhyme, meter, and poetry forms, read our full article on the topic:

3. Elements of Poetry: Literary Devices

“Poetry: the best words in the best order.” — Samuel Taylor Coleridge

How does poetry express complex ideas in concise, lyrical language? Literary devices—like metaphor, symbolism, juxtaposition, irony, and hyperbole—help make poetry possible. Learn how to write and master these devices here:

How to Write a Poem, in 7 Steps

To condense the elements of poetry into an actual poem, we’re going to follow a seven-step approach. However, it’s important to know that every poet’s process is different. While the steps presented here are a logical path to get from idea to finished poem, they’re not the only tried-and-true method of poetry writing. Poets can—and should!—modify these steps and generate their own writing process.

Nonetheless, if you’re new to writing poetry or want to explore a different writing process, try your hand at our approach. Here’s how to write a poem step by step!

1. Devise a Topic

The easiest way to start writing a poem is to begin with a topic.

However, devising a topic is often the hardest part. What should your poem be about? And where can you find ideas?

Here are a few places to search for inspiration:

  • Other Works of Literature: Poetry doesn’t exist in a vacuum—it’s part of a larger literary tapestry, and can absolutely be influenced by other works. For example, read “The Golden Shovel” by Terrance Hayes , a poem that was inspired by Gwendolyn Brooks’ “We Real Cool.”
  • Real-World Events: Poetry, especially contemporary poetry, has the power to convey new and transformative ideas about the world. Take the poem “A Cigarette” by Ilya Kaminsky , which finds community in a warzone like the eye of a hurricane.
  • Your Life: What would poetry be if not a form of memoir? Many contemporary poets have documented their lives in verse. Take Sylvia Plath’s poem “Full Fathom Five” —a daring poem for its time, as few writers so boldly criticized their family as Plath did.
  • The Everyday and Mundane: Poetry isn’t just about big, earth-shattering events: much can be said about mundane events, too. Take “Ode to Shea Butter” by Angel Nafis , a poem that celebrates the beautiful “everydayness” of moisturizing.
  • Nature: The Earth has always been a source of inspiration for poets, both today and in antiquity. Take “Wild Geese” by Mary Oliver , which finds meaning in nature’s quiet rituals.
  • Writing Exercises: Prompts and exercises can help spark your creativity, even if the poem you write has nothing to do with the prompt! Here’s 24 writing exercises to get you started.

At this point, you’ve got a topic for your poem. Maybe it’s a topic you’re passionate about, and the words pour from your pen and align themselves into a perfect sonnet! It’s not impossible—most poets have a couple of poems that seemed to write themselves.

However, it’s far more likely you’re searching for the words to talk about this topic. This is where journaling comes in.

Sit in front of a blank piece of paper, with nothing but the topic written on the top. Set a timer for 15-30 minutes and put down all of your thoughts related to the topic. Don’t stop and think for too long, and try not to obsess over finding the right words: what matters here is emotion, the way your subconscious grapples with the topic.

At the end of this journaling session, go back through everything you wrote, and highlight whatever seems important to you: well-written phrases, poignant moments of emotion, even specific words that you want to use in your poem.

Journaling is a low-risk way of exploring your topic without feeling pressured to make it sound poetic. “Sounding poetic” will only leave you with empty language: your journal allows you to speak from the heart. Everything you need for your poem is already inside of you, the journaling process just helps bring it out!

3. Think About Form

As one of the elements of poetry, form plays a crucial role in how the poem is both written and read. Have you ever wanted to write a sestina ? How about a contrapuntal, or a double cinquain, or a series of tanka? Your poem can take a multitude of forms, including the beautifully unstructured free verse form; while form can be decided in the editing process, it doesn’t hurt to think about it now.

4. Write the First Line

After a productive journaling session, you’ll be much more acquainted with the state of your heart. You might have a line in your journal that you really want to begin with, or you might want to start fresh and refer back to your journal when you need to! Either way, it’s time to begin.

What should the first line of your poem be? There’s no strict rule here—you don’t have to start your poem with a certain image or literary device. However, here’s a few ways that poets often begin their work:

  • Set the Scene: Poetry can tell stories just like prose does. Anne Carson does just this in her poem “Lines,” situating the scene in a conversation with the speaker’s mother.
  • Start at the Conflict: Right away, tell the reader where it hurts most. Margaret Atwood does this in “Ghost Cat,” a poem about aging.
  • Start With a Contradiction: Juxtaposition and contrast are two powerful tools in the poet’s toolkit. Joan Larkin’s poem “Want” begins and ends with these devices. Carlos Gimenez Smith also begins his poem “Entanglement” with a juxtaposition.
  • Start With Your Title: Some poets will use the title as their first line, like Ron Padgett’s poem “Ladies and Gentlemen in Outer Space.”

There are many other ways to begin poems, so play around with different literary devices, and when you’re stuck, turn to other poetry for inspiration.

5. Develop Ideas and Devices

You might not know where your poem is going until you finish writing it. In the meantime, stick to your literary devices. Avoid using too many abstract nouns, develop striking images, use metaphors and similes to strike interesting comparisons, and above all, speak from the heart.

6. Write the Closing Line

Some poems end “full circle,” meaning that the images the poet used in the beginning are reintroduced at the end. Gwendolyn Brooks does this in her poem “my dreams, my work, must wait till after hell.”

Yet, many poets don’t realize what their poems are about until they write the ending line . Poetry is a search for truth, especially the hard truths that aren’t easily explained in casual speech. Your poem, too, might not be finished until it comes across a necessary truth, so write until you strike the heart of what you feel, and the poem will come to its own conclusion.

7. Edit, Edit, Edit!

Do you have a working first draft of your poem? Congratulations! Getting your feelings onto the page is a feat in itself.

Yet, no guide on how to write a poem is complete without a note on editing. If you plan on sharing or publishing your work, or if you simply want to edit your poem to near-perfection, keep these tips in mind.

  • Adjectives and Adverbs: Use these parts of speech sparingly. Most imagery shouldn’t rely on adjectives and adverbs, because the image should be striking and vivid on its own, without too much help from excess language.
  • Concrete Line Breaks: Line breaks help emphasize important words, making certain images and ideas clearer to the reader. As a general rule, most of your lines should start and end with concrete words—nouns and verbs especially.
  • Stanza Breaks: Stanzas are like paragraphs to poetry. A stanza can develop a new idea, contrast an existing idea, or signal a transition in the poem’s tone. Make sure each stanza clearly stands for something as a unit of the poem.
  • Mixed Metaphors: A mixed metaphor is when two metaphors occupy the same idea, making the poem unnecessarily difficult to understand. Here’s an example of a mixed metaphor: “a watched clock never boils.” The meaning can be discerned, but the image remains unclear. Be wary of mixed metaphors—though some poets (like Shakespeare) make them work, they’re tricky and often disruptive.
  • Abstractions: Above all, avoid using excessively abstract language. It’s fine to use the word “love” 2 or 3 times in a poem, but don’t use it twice in every stanza. Let the imagery in your poem express your feelings and ideas, and only use abstractions as brief connective tissue in otherwise-concrete writing.

Lastly, don’t feel pressured to “do something” with your poem. Not all poems need to be shared and edited. Poetry doesn’t have to be “good,” either—it can simply be a statement of emotions by the poet, for the poet. Publishing is an admirable goal, but also, give yourself permission to write bad poems, unedited poems, abstract poems, and poems with an audience of one. Write for yourself—editing is for the other readers.

How to Write a Poem: Different Approaches and Philosophies

Poetry is the oldest literary form, pre-dating prose, theater, and the written word itself. As such, there are many different schools of thought when it comes to writing poetry. You might be wondering how to write a poem through different methods and approaches: here’s four philosophies to get you started.

How to Write a Poem: Poetry as Emotion

If you asked a Romantic Poet “what is poetry?”, they would tell you that poetry is the spontaneous emotion of the soul.

The Romantic Era viewed poetry as an extension of human emotion—a way of perceiving the world through unbridled creativity, centered around the human soul. While many Romantic poets used traditional forms in their poetry, the Romantics weren’t afraid to break from tradition, either.

To write like a Romantic, feel—and feel intensely. The words will follow the emotions, as long as a blank page sits in front of you.

How to Write a Poem: Poetry as Stream of Consciousness

If you asked a Modernist poet, “What is poetry?” they would tell you that poetry is the search for complex truths.

Modernist Poets were keen on the use of poetry as a window into the mind. A common technique of the time was “Stream of Consciousness,” which is unfiltered writing that flows directly from the poet’s inner dialogue. By tapping into one’s subconscious, the poet might uncover deeper truths and emotions they were initially unaware of.

Depending on who you are as a writer, Stream of Consciousness can be tricky to master, but this guide covers the basics of how to write using this technique.

How to Write a Poem: Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a practice of documenting the mind, rather than trying to control or edit what it produces. This practice was popularized by the Beat Poets , who in turn were inspired by Eastern philosophies and Buddhist teachings. If you asked a Beat Poet “what is poetry?”, they would tell you that poetry is the human consciousness, unadulterated.

To learn more about the art of leaving your mind alone , take a look at our guide on Mindfulness, from instructor Marc Olmsted.

How to Write a Poem: Poem as Camera Lens

Many contemporary poets use poetry as a camera lens, documenting global events and commenting on both politics and injustice. If you find yourself itching to write poetry about the modern day, press your thumb against the pulse of the world and write what you feel.

Additionally, check out these two essays by Electric Literature on the politics of poetry:

  • What Can Poetry Do That Politics Can’t?
  • Why All Poems Are Political (TL;DR: Poetry is an urgent expression of freedom).

Okay, I Know How to Write a Good Poem. What Next?

Poetry, like all art forms, takes practice and dedication. You might write a poem you enjoy now, and think it’s awfully written 3 years from now; you might also write some of your best work after reading this guide. Poetry is fickle, but the pen lasts forever, so write poems as long as you can!

Once you understand how to write a poem, and after you’ve drafted some pieces that you’re proud of and ready to share, here are some next steps you can take.

Publish in Literary Journals

Want to see your name in print? These literary journals house some of the best poetry being published today.

Assemble and Publish a Manuscript

A poem can tell a story. So can a collection of poems. If you’re interested in publishing a poetry book, learn how to compose and format one here:

Join a Writing Community is an online community of writers, and we’d love it if you shared your poetry with us! Join us on Facebook and check out our upcoming poetry courses .

Poetry doesn’t exist in a vacuum, it exists to educate and uplift society. The world is waiting for your voice, so find a group and share your work!

' src=

Sean Glatch


' src=

super useful! love these articles 💕

' src=

Indeed, very helpful, consize. I could not say more than thank you.

' src=

I’ve never read a better guide on how to write poetry step by step. Not only does it give great tips, but it also provides helpful links! Thank you so much.

' src=

Thank you very much, Hamna! I’m so glad this guide was helpful for you.

' src=

Very inspirational and marvelous tips

' src=

Thank you super tips very helpful.

' src=

I have never gone through the steps of writing poetry like this, I will take a closer look at your post.

' src=

Beautiful! Thank you! I’m really excited to try journaling as a starter step x

[…] How to Write a Poem, Step-by-Step […]

' src=

This is really helpful, thanks so much

' src=

Extremely thorough! Nice job.

' src=

Thank you so much for sharing your awesome tips for beginner writers!

' src=

People must reboot this and bookmark it. Your writing and explanation is detailed to the core. Thanks for helping me understand different poetic elements. While reading, actually, I start thinking about how my husband construct his songs and why other artists lack that organization (or desire to be better). Anyway, this gave me clarity.

I’m starting to use poetry as an outlet for my blogs, but I also have to keep in mind I’m transitioning from a blogger to a poetic sweet kitty potato (ha). It’s a unique transition, but I’m so used to writing a lot, it’s strange to see an open blog post with a lot of lines and few paragraphs.

Anyway, thanks again!

I’m happy this article was so helpful, Eternity! Thanks for commenting, and best of luck with your poetry blog.

Yours in verse, Sean

' src=

One of the best articles I read on how to write poems. And it is totally step by step process which is easy to read and understand.

' src=

Thanks for the step step explanation in how to write poems it’s a very helpful to me and also for everyone one. THANKYOU

' src=

Totally detailed and in a simple language told the best way how to write poems. It is a guide that one should read and follow. It gives the detailed guidance about how to write poems. One of the best articles written on how to write poems.

' src=

what a guidance thank you so much now i can write a poem thank you again again and again

' src=

The most inspirational and informative article I have ever read in the 21st century.It gives the most relevent,practical, comprehensive and effective insights and guides to aspiring writers.

' src=

Thank you so much. This is so useful to me a poetry

[…] Write a short story/poem (Here are some tips) […]

' src=

It was very helpful and am willing to try it out for my writing Thanks ❤️

' src=

Thank you so much. This is so helpful to me, and am willing to try it out for my writing .

' src=

Absolutely constructive, direct, and so useful as I’m striving to develop a recent piece. Thank you!

' src=

thank you for your explanation……,love it

' src=

Really great. Nothing less.

Leave a Comment Cancel Reply

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Writing Studio

Writing about poetry: questions and answers, frequently asked questions on writing about poetry.

In an effort to make our handouts more accessible, we have begun converting our PDF handouts to web pages. Download this page as a PDF: Writing about Poetry Q&A Return to Writing Studio Handouts

Question 1: So what is a poetry paper, and how is it different from summary papers or compare-and-contrast essays?

Answer: A poetry paper is actually called an explication , or a close reading of a poem. It is a line-by-line commentary about what is happening there.

However, when writing an explication, is it important to remember that it is more than just a long summary. Although you may have to summarize the poem in certain parts of your paper (like in the introduction or conclusion), or you may choose to paraphrase a few lines that don’t contain things related to the focus of your paper, an explication is far more complex.

It is, in fact, a close reading of a poem based on a claim that you have made about it. Generally, good explications go line by line, picking out every detail in the poem that supports your argument .

Question 2: Whoa, you just said “argument.” Do poetry papers have those?

Answer: Yes, they do. Poetry explications should have a central argument or thesis that guides your analysis. And remember, thesis statements often start by asking general questions like:

  • What does this poem “mean”? What is the author (or speaker) trying to say in it?
  • What is the major “theme” of the poem: loneliness, love, racism, or what?
  • How will my explication help my readers understand the poem in a fresh, interesting way?

Once you have chosen a theme, try to shape your observation into a more developed statement.

For example, John Donne’s sonnet “Death Be Not Proud” is certainly about death, but it is also doing something else: the speaker is arguing that, because Death is only the end of a life on earth, it is not something to be afraid of, since, according to the Christian beliefs of the speaker, it is only temporary, and will no longer exist when God returns to earth.

Be sure to ask the big questions , but always allow them to lead you to a specific argument about the poem.

Question 3: Okay, I have an argument and I think I’m ready to write. So how do I prove it?

Answer: The key thing to remember about explications is to analyze . Pick apart the language of the poem. Look for things such as symbolism, imagery, metaphor, tone, syntax, irony, allusion , etc. Show how the language of the poem is connected to its content and/or theme.

For example, don’t just stop at the observation that Hughes uses a metaphor—make an argument about how that metaphor helps him do what he does in his poem.

Also, if applicable, attend to the form of the poem ( identify the type of poem, line-breaks, rhythm, stanza breaks, rhyme scheme, etc.). Again, connect your observations about form to your interpretations of the content or theme.

Question 4: Cool. Thanks for your help. Is there anything else I should keep in mind?

Answer: Sure. Here are some general tips for about writing about poetry:

General Tips for Writing About Poetry

Let’s start with the “don’ts” (or “avoids”):.

  • AVOID talking about the poem in terms of “today’s society.” If you feel that the social, cultural, and/or historical context discussions are important, or that the author is trying to say something really cool to or about society, then meet the poem on its own turf: Ask yourself: What was happening in society the country, or in a specific community when the poem was written? Why are those facts important to my explication of the poem? Also, avoid using words like “timeless” or “universal” —every poem has its own context, and words like that often make your reader wonder if you’re trying to avoid the work of discussing that poem on its own terms.
  • AVOID saying things that are meaningless or obviously true : “Countee Cullen’s poem makes use of diction and syntax.” Of course—a lot of poems do. Instead, ask yourself if there is something distinctive or unusual about his use of diction. If so, then what purpose does it serve in this poem?
  • AVOID evaluating the poem in simple terms like “good” and “bad.” This also includes statements like “Brooks’ poem is a realistic example of a guilty mother.” Lots of poets might like to do that, but why is that “realism” important? Try to find something unique or interesting about her portrayal of the mother that makes the poem different from other poems about mothers.

And Now for the “DO”:

Organize the essay in a purposeful manner. You don’t have to write a standard five-paragraph essay, but you do need to give your reader a sense that your paper is headed somewhere. Here are a couple of conventional ways to organize poetry explications:

  • The poem begins….
  • In the next/following line…
  • The speaker immediately adds….
  • She then introduces….
  • The next stanza begins by saying….
  • By formal/stylistic device. For instance, you might have one paragraph on syntax, one on meter, and so on. Again, the key is to show how these different devices illuminate different aspects of the argument. Don’t just repeat, “Cullen’s use of diction [insert thesis here]”; “Cullen’s use of imagery [insert thesis here]”; “Cullen’s use of meter [insert thesis here again].” Show how each of them proves your argument in different ways , or how they illuminate certain complexities in your argument.
  • By thematic element. A poem will have several thematic elements going on (sometimes even seemingly contradictory ones), with each contributing to the meaning in a different way, and you can definitely write about them in the same paper. Just remember, be specific . Even two poems written by the same author on the same theme probably present that theme in different ways each time.

Last revised: 8/2008 | Adapted for web delivery: 12/2021 

In order to access certain content on this page, you may need to download Adobe Acrobat Reader or an equivalent PDF viewer software.

🎉 Our next novel writing master class starts in – ! Claim your spot →

Looking to publish? Meet your dream editor on Reedsy.

Find the perfect editor for your next book

1 million authors trust the professionals on Reedsy, come meet them.

Last updated on Nov 23, 2022

How to Write a Poem: Get Tips from a Published Poet

Ever wondered how to write a poem? For writers who want to dig deep, composing verse lets you sift the sand of your experience for new glimmers of insight. And if you’re in it for less lofty reasons, shaping a stanza from start to finish can teach you to have fun with language in totally new ways.

To help demystify the subtle art of writing verse, we chatted with Reedsy editor (and published poet) Lauren Stroh . In 8 simple steps, here's how to write a poem:

1. Brainstorm your starting point

2. free-write in prose first, 3. choose your poem’s form and style, 4. read for inspiration, 5. write for an audience of one — you, 6. read your poem out loud, 7. take a break to refresh your mind, 8. have fun revising your poem.

Qap_5aHX1q4 Video Thumb

If you’re struggling to write your poem in order from the first line to the last, a good trick is opening with whichever starting point your brain can latch onto as it learns to think in verse.

Your starting point can be a line or a phrase you want to work into your poem, though it doesn’t have to take the form of language at all. It might be a picture in your head, as particular as the curl of hair over your daughter’s ear as she sleeps, or as capacious as the sea. It can even be a complicated feeling you want to render with precision — or maybe it's a memory you return to again and again. Think of this starting point as the "why" behind your poem, your impetus for writing it in the first place.

If you’re worried your starting point isn’t grand enough to merit an entire poem, stop right there. After all, literary giants have wrung verse out of every topic under the sun, from the disappointments of a post- Odyssey Odysseus to illicitly eaten refrigerated plums .

How to Write a Poem | Tennyson's "Ulysses" revisits a character from Greek epic, but that's only one of the topics you can address in your poetry

As Lauren Stroh sees it, your experience is more than worthy of being immortalized in verse.

"I think the most successful poems articulate something true about the human experience and help us look at the everyday world in new and exciting ways."

It may seem counterintuitive but if you struggle to write down lines that resonate, perhaps start with some prose writing first. Take this time to delve into the image, feeling, or theme at the heart of your poem, and learn to pin it down with language. Give yourself a chance to mull things over before actually writing the poem. 

Take 10 minutes and jot down anything that comes to mind when you think of your starting point. You can write in paragraphs, dash off bullet points, or even sketch out a mind map . The purpose of this exercise isn’t to produce an outline: it’s to generate a trove of raw material, a repertoire of loosely connected fragments to draw upon as you draft your poem in earnest.

Silence your inner critic for now

And since this is raw material, the last thing you should do is censor yourself. Catch yourself scoffing at a turn of phrase, overthinking a rhetorical device , or mentally grousing, “This metaphor will never make it into the final draft”? Tell that inner critic to hush for now and jot it down anyway. You just might be able to refine that slapdash, off-the-cuff idea into a sharp and poignant line.

Whether you’ve free-written your way to a beginning or you’ve got a couple of lines jotted down, before you complete a whole first draft of your poem, take some time to think about form and style. 

The form of a poem often carries a lot of meaning beyond the structural "rules" that it offers the writer. The rhyme patterns of sonnets — and the Shakespearean influence over the form — usually lend themselves to passionate pronouncements of love, whether merry or bleak. On the other hand, acrostic poems are often more cheeky because of the secret meaning that it hides in plain sight. 

Even if your material begs for a poem without formal restrictions, you’ll still have to decide on the texture and tone of your language. Free verse, after all, is as diverse a form as the novel, ranging from the breathless maximalism of Walt Whitman to the cool austerity of H.D . Where, on this spectrum, will your poem fall?

How to Write a Poem | H.D.'s poetry shows off a linguistically sparse, imagistically concrete style

Choosing a form and tone for your poem early on can help you work with some kind of structure to imbue more meanings to your lines. And if you’ve used free-writing to generate some raw material for yourself, a structure can give you the guidance you need to organize your notes into a poem. 

A poem isn’t a nonfiction book or a historical novel: you don’t have to accumulate reams of research to write a good one. That said, a little bit of outside reading can stave off writer’s block and keep you inspired throughout the writing process.

Build a short, personalized syllabus around your poem’s form and subject. Say you’re writing a sensorily rich, linguistically spare bit of free verse about a relationship of mutual jealousy between mother and daughter. In that case, you’ll want to read some key Imagist poems , alongside some poems that sketch out complicated visions of parenthood in unsentimental terms.

How to Write a Poem | Ezra Pound's two-line poem is a masterclass in using everyday language in verse

And if you don’t want to limit yourself to poems similar in form and style to your own, Lauren has you covered with an all-purpose reading list:

  • The Dream of a Common Languag e by Adrienne Rich
  • Anything you can get your hands on by Mary Oliver
  • The poems “ First Turn to Me ” and “ You Jerk You Didn’t Call Me Up ” by Bernadette Mayer.
  • I often gift Lunch Poems by Frank O’Hara to friends who write.
  • Everyone should read the interviews from the Paris Review’s archives . It’s just nice to observe how people familiar with language talk when they’re not performing, working, or warming up to write.

Even with preparation, the pressure of actually producing verse can still awaken your inner metrophobe (or poetry-fearer). What if people don’t understand — or even misinterpret — what you’re trying to say? What if they don’t feel drawn to your work? To keep the anxiety at bay, Lauren suggests writing for yourself, not for an external audience.

"I absolutely believe that poets can determine the validity of their own success if they are changed by the work they are producing themselves; if they are challenged by it; or if it calls into question their ethics, their habits, or their relationship to the living world. And personally, my life has certainly been changed by certain lines I’ve had the bravery to think and then write — and those moments are when I’ve felt most like I’ve made it."

You might eventually polish your work if you decide to publish your poetry down the line. (If you do, definitely check out the rest of this guide for tips and a list of magazines to submit to.) But as your first draft comes together, treat it like it’s meant for your eyes only.

A good poem doesn’t have to be pretty: maybe an easy, melodic loveliness isn’t your aim. It should, however, come alive on the page with a consciously crafted rhythm, whether hymn-like or discordant. To achieve that, read your poem out loud — at first, line by line, and then all together, as a complete text.

How to Write a Poem | Emily Dickinson's poetry shows off her extraordinary musicality

Trying out every line against your ear can help you weigh out a choice between synonyms — getting you to notice, say, the watery sound of “glacial”, the brittleness of “icy,” the solidity of “cold”.

Reading out loud can also help you troubleshoot line breaks that just don't feel right. Is the line unnaturally long, forcing you to rush through it or pause in the middle for a hurried inhale? If so, do you like that destabilizing effect, or do you want to literally give the reader some room to breathe? Testing these variations aloud is perhaps the only way to answer questions like these. 

While it’s incredibly exciting to complete a draft of your poem, and you might be itching to dive back in and edit it, it’s always advisable to take a break first. You don’t have to turn completely away from writing if you don’t want to. Take a week to chip away at your novel or even muse idly on your next poetic project — so long as you distance yourself from this poem a little while. 

This is because, by this point, you’ve probably read out every line so many times the meaning has leached out of the syllables. With the time away, you let your mind refresh so that you can approach the piece with sharper attention and more ideas to refine it. 

At the end of the day, even if you write in a well-established form, poetry is about experimenting with language, both written and spoken. Lauren emphasizes that revising a poem is thus an open-ended process that requires patience — and a sense of play. 

"Have fun. Play. Be patient. Don’t take it seriously, or do. Though poems may look shorter than what you’re used to writing, they often take years to be what they really are. They change and evolve. The most important thing is to find a quiet place where you can be with yourself and really listen."

Is it time to get other people involved?

Want another pair of eyes on your poem during this process? You have options. You can swap pieces with a beta reader , workshop it with a critique group , or even engage a professional poetry editor like Lauren to refine your work — a strong option if you plan to submit it to a journal or turn it into the foundation for a chapbook .

Want a poetry expert to polish up your verse?

Professional poetry editors are on Reedsy. Sign up for free to meet them!

Learn how Reedsy can help you craft a beautiful book.

The working poet's checklist

If you decide to fly solo, here’s a checklist to work through as you revise:

✅ Hunt for clichés. Did you find yourself reaching for ready-made idioms at any point? Go back to the sentiment you were grappling with and try to capture it in stronger, more vivid terms.

✅ See if your poem begins where it should. Did you take a few lines of throat-clearing to get to the actual point? Try starting your poem further down.

✅ Make sure every line belongs. As you read each line, ask yourself: how does this contribute to the poem as a whole? Does it advance the theme, clarify the imagery, set or subvert the reader’s expectations? If you answer with something like, “It makes the poem sound nice,” consider cutting it.

Once you’ve worked your way through this checklist, feel free to brew yourself a cup of tea and sit quietly for a while, reflecting on your literary triumphs. 

Whether these poetry writing tips have awakened your inner Wordsworth, or sent you happily gamboling back to prose, we hope you enjoyed playing with poetry —  and that you learned something new about your approach to language.

And if you are looking to share your poetry with the world, the next post in this guide can show the ropes regarding how to publish your poems! 

Anna Clarke says:

29/03/2020 – 04:37

I entered a short story competition and though I did not medal, one of the judges told me that some of my prose is very poetic. The following year I entered a poetry competition and won a bronze medal. That was my first attempt at writing poetry. I am more aware of figurative language in writing prose now. I am learning to marry the two. I don't have any poems online.

Comments are currently closed.

Join a community of over 1 million authors

Reedsy is more than just a blog. Become a member today to discover how we can help you publish a beautiful book.

1 million authors trust the professionals on Reedsy, come meet them.

Enter your email or get started with a social account:

Reedsy | Poetry Editor | 2020-03

Polish up your verse

Sign up to meet professional poetry editors on Reedsy.

  • Skip to primary navigation
  • Skip to main content
  • Skip to primary sidebar
  • Skip to footer

Demme Learning

Demme Learning

Building Lifelong Learners

  • Default Sort Order
  • Alphabetical: A to Z

Customer Service: M-F 8:30am - 6pm ET Live Chat • 888-854-6284 • Email

7 Poetry Writing Prompts Your Students Will Actually Enjoy

Demme Learning · March 29, 2023 · Leave a Comment

Girl writes in a notebook at a wooden desk.

Kids often enjoy reading poems, such as those by Shel Silverstein , but it can sometimes be a challenge getting them to like writing their own. The key is to make the process as fun and engaging as possible! Below, we’ve compiled seven poetry writing prompts that will pique your students’ interest and inspire them to create their own poems.

Fun Poetry Writing Prompts for Kids

Looking for some poetry writing prompts to try out with your students? Here are seven ideas to get you started!

1. Object Poem (with a Tiny Twist)

Have your student look around the room or go outside and create a list of five very small objects that they see, such as a piece of lint, button, ant, or wad of gum. Once they have their list, ask them to choose one item to write a poem about. Here’s the catch: the poem must be tiny too, containing only five lines.

2. Remix Poem

Ask your student to pick a favorite song and write out the words to at least one verse or chorus. It can be a pop song, camp song, or even a nursery rhyme. Have them take a few minutes to analyze the structure and rhyme scheme . Then, ask them to keep the same structure but change the lyrics to create a new rhyming song! For example:

Do Your Ears Hang Low? (Original) Do your ears hang low? Do they wobble to and fro? Can you tie them in a knot? Can you tie them in a bow? Can you throw them over your shoulder Like a continental soldier? Do your ears hang low?

Naughty Dogs (Rewrite) Do your dogs have fleas? Do they hide your Dad’s car keys? Do they chew your brother’s socks? Will they steal your sister’s cheese? Do they bury all their bones And lick your ice cream cones? Do they love to tease?

If your students need help thinking of words that rhyme, encourage them to use a rhyming dictionary or the online RhymeZone tool.

Young boy shares ice cream cone with a golden retriever.

3) Color Poem

Invite your student to pick a favorite color. Once they have one in mind, ask them to close their eyes and visualize different objects and scenes related to that color. Next, ask them to keep their eyes closed, but encourage them to think about how that color makes them feel. You can use prompting questions aloud to help trigger ideas, such as, “what does that color taste like?”Now that they’ve had time to visualize, have them write down a list of ideas they had while brainstorming. Tell them that they’ll be using this list to create a color poem that contains rich sensory details . Their poem should include:

  • Things they might SEE
  • Sounds they might HEAR
  • Textures they might FEEL
  • Aromas they might SMELL
  • Flavors they might TASTE
  • Feelings they might EXPERIENCE

Be sure to teach your students not to use tired words that can steal life from their writing. Poetry depends on strong word choices, so show them how to make each one count! A thesaurus is a great tool to find stronger words.

Here’s an example of a color poem that’s filled with vivid descriptions that call upon the senses. Let your kids use it as a template for their own color poem.

White is daisies bobbing in the breeze White is frollicking lambs White is a fresh coat of paint on the front gate White is crashing ocean waves White tastes like frosty vanilla ice cream White smells like a cool morning rain White sounds like clean sheets snapping on the clothesline White feels like a velvety bunny White looks like a cloud-filled sky White makes me sing for joy White is purity of spring

4. Word Bank Poem

Need a quick and simple poetry writing prompt for kids? Reach for a book and open it up to a random page. Make a list of ten words that jump out at you on the page. Once you have your list, write the words where your students can easily see. Then, ask them to write a poem using at least five of those words.  The type of poem they craft can be up to them, or you can assign a certain type—narrative, rhyming, free verse, cinquain . Just be sure to communicate your expectations clearly before they begin writing.

5. Alliteration Poem

Alliteration is a commonly used poetic device. Alliteration happens when words that appear close together in a line or verse share the same beginning sound (usually a consonant). The following poem gives a good example of alliteration.

L acy lilacs by the lake shore. L arkspur blooms and lady’s slippers, S cent of lavender and lemon, L ingers long among the lilies.

Do you hear all the words that start with the /l/ sound? That’s alliteration! Now, ask your student to write their own short poem using alliteration. Like the example above, their poem doesn’t have to rhyme, but it certainly can!

Purple lilac bushes in full bloom

6. Acrostic Poem

Acrostic poetry is always a hit for kids. An acrostic poem is one where the first letter of the first word in each line spells out a word or phrase. Typically, the word or phrase is related to the theme of the poem. A line can be a single word, a phrase or partial thought, or a complete sentence.  Here are two examples of acrostic poems based on the word SPRING. The first example is a series of simple descriptive phrases that incorporates alliteration as well!

S unny skies P lanting peppers R omping like rabbits I mpatiens and irises N ew nests G listening, green, and glorious!

The second example turns a brief bit of vivid prose into a poem simply by dividing it into lines. If they break some sentences in the middle instead of at the end, your students can give their acrostics a more poetic look and sound .

S parrows twitter nearby as I P ress marigold seeds into the rich brown earth. R eveling in the moment, I wiggle my bare toes in the warm soil, N ot wanting to go inside, even for supper. G uess I have spring fever!

You can have your students create a similar acrostic for the current season, or feel free to choose (or let them choose) a different theme word to base their poem on.

7. “Never” Poem

A “never” poem is a fun variation of an alliteration poem. To start, have your student choose a consonant letter. Then, ask them to write one sentence for each of the following, repeating their chosen consonant sound as many times as possible:

  • Something you would never eat.
  • An item you would never wear.
  • Something you would never buy.
  • Something you would never do.
  • Someplace you would never go.
  • Something you would always like to think about.
  • “And I promise I will never ____.”

Before they begin, show your students the following example. Point out how the /b/ sound repeats throughout the poem.

Of Blue Biscuits and Bouncing Balls

I would never eat blue biscuits. I would never wear a baggy beaded bonnet with brown buttons. I would never buy a blind baboon’s broken bicycle. I would never read a book about boat-building in Bulgaria. I would never go to Brooklyn to get bologna. I would always like to think about bouncing balls in the bathtub. And I promise I will never let Bubba’s bunny eat barbecued beans for breakfast.

Encourage them to be creative and get silly with it! Once their “never” poem is finished, invite them to choose some words from the poem and write a related title.

Boy smiles while presenting to his teacher and classmates.

Don’t forget to allow your students to share their poetry! Consider hosting a poetry reading so students can share their poems with peers or family members—complete with some fun café-esque food and drinks. This will add an extra level of excitement to the writing process.

We hope that you and your students will enjoy these poetry writing prompts! We’d love to hear if you have any other suggested prompts in the comments below.

Are you looking for an engaging, new writing curriculum that encourages creativity? See how WriteShop can work for your students!

Reader interactions, leave a reply cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Related Stories

A young girl writes in front of an open laptop.

Overcoming Teen Handwriting Struggles in the Digital Age

A young girl and boy write side-by-side.

4 Fun Writing Games for Kids

A young boy writing for homework.

Why Is Writing Important?

Understanding Poetry: 5 Questions to Ask

poem writing questions

Many people are discouraged from enjoying poetry because they claim it’s too difficult. Trust me. I’ve had those moments when faced with an enigma of words on the page.

One way I hope to lessen the fear of reading poetry is to show you how to read it—especially for more complex poems. These five questions will help you crack the code of many poems you might come across.

What is the imagery in the poem?

Understanding poetry begins with visualizing the central images in the poem. What do you see, taste, smell, hear, and feel?

Then figure out what those images have in common. For instance, in Langston Hughes’ “Mother to Son” the imagery centers around a broken down staircase and reflects personal brokenness and hardship.

What is the mood of the poem? (Or How does it make me feel?)

The imagery can help you determine whether the mood or feeling of the poem is positive or negative. In the poem above, the negative imagery conveys a negative, or somber mood. Yet the speaker shows her determination to overcome life’s hardships by saying things such as “For I’se still going honey” which in turn allows the poem to end on a more positive note rather than desperation.

Who is the speaker of the poem?

The speaker is the voice of the poem, and it’s not necessarily the poet. In Hughes’ poem , the speaker is a mother speaking to her son, while the poet is a man. You should identify the speaker by describing him or her as “someone who…” and fill in the blank. Does the person admire nature? Or does she have a message for someone? Maybe the speaker is complaining about something or questioning his life. In this poem, the speaker is a mother who is encouraging her son not to give up just because life is difficult.

What structural or stylistic techniques does the poet use?

Notice the punctuation, informal language and repetition in the poem.

Usually poets use structure and style to emphasize the message or reflect the meaning of the poem. In Hughes’ poem, the repeated line “And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair” is a big key to the message he’s trying to convey. Also, the poem is written in dialect which makes it sound more like we’re overhearing part of a conversation. This makes it more personal.

What is the message of the poem?

All of the above questions point to the message the poet wants to convey. Consider the negative imagery that represents the hardships of life and the negative mood that contrasts with the speaker’s words of encouragement. Her words emphasize that she’s not given up and kept going despite the hardships. So we can guess the message the poet means to share is to persevere through hard times no matter what.

Now I know you’re probably thinking that was too easy. And yes, for teaching purposes I picked a simpler poem. However, if you get in the habit of looking for these things when reading any level of poetry, you will find it much more understandable and enjoyable.

Do you have a special technique you use to uncover the messages in the poetry you read? Tell me below.

You Might Also Like

poem writing questions

Tanka: Poetic Forms III

poem writing questions

What is Poetry- Darlo O. Gemeinhardt

poem writing questions

Found Poetry: Poetic Forms I

Simple acts of kindness, my one-arm savior.


Follow Us Elsewhere

Latest tweets, recent posts.

poem writing questions

Understand and Know Your Competition

The Intentional Writer column

Do you need a book proposal “cheat sheet”?

62 Questions to Ask a Poet

Poets are fascinating people, and their work can be both moving and enlightening. If you’ve ever wanted to know more about what inspires them and drives them to write, these questions are a good place to start. We’ve put together a list of questions you can use to start the conversation.

62 Questions you can ask a poet to get inside their head and learn more about their process:

  • What inspired you to start writing poetry?
  • Who are some of your favorite poets? Why do you like their work?
  • Do you think the poem should be read aloud or experienced silently on the page?
  • Do you think you have to figure out the meaning of a poem, or should it just be felt?
  • What’s your favorite poem? And why?
  • What’s your favorite poem that you’ve written?
  • What’s the best thing someone has said about one of your poems?
  • What’s the worst thing someone has said about one of your poems?
  • Do you think poems need to rhyme? Why or why not?
  • What topics do you usually write about in your poems?
  • Do you consider yourself primarily a poet, or do you write in other genres?
  • If so, what else do you like to write about?
  • What’s the best advice someone has given you about writing poetry?
  • Has there ever been a moment when you didn’t want to share one of your poems with someone because it felt too personal or intimate?
  • If so, can you tell me about that poem and why you chose not to share it?
  • What are some common misconceptions about poets or poetry you’ve encountered throughout your life?
  • Do you have any funny stories or anecdotes about your experiences as a poet that you’d like to share?
  • What would be your number one piece of advice for someone who wants to start writing poetry but doesn’t know where to begin?
  • What kinds of subjects do you usually write about?
  • Do you see yourself as more of a storyteller or a wordsmith?
  • How long does it usually take you to write a complete poem?
  • What’s the best/worst thing about being a poet?
  • Do you think poetry is still relevant in today’s society? Why or why not?
  • What role do you think social media plays in the world of poetry?
  • Are there any particular poets you follow on social media? Who do you follow and why?
  • Have you ever participated in a poetry slam or open mic night? How did it go?
  • What advice would you give to someone who wants to write poetry but doesn’t know where to start?
  • If poetry were banned tomorrow, what would you do instead to express yourself creatively?
  • How often do you write?
  • Do you prefer to write in certain places or at certain times of the day?
  • Do you think there’s a difference between good and bad poetry?
  • What would you say is your “muse”?
  • What have you been working on lately and what are you looking forward to?
  • Where do you think poetry is headed in the future?
  • How do you feel when someone tells you they don’t like your poem?
  • What is your process for writing a poem?
  • Do you plan each line of a poem before you write it, or do the words come to you as you write?
  • What theme comes up frequently in your poems?
  • Do you see yourself primarily as a poet or as a [insert other identities here]?
  • To what extent has being a poet influenced the way you see the world and vice versa?
  • In what ways has your poetry changed since you started writing?
  • Who’s your audience for your poetry and how do you hope they react to it?
  • What do you wish people knew about poetry or poets in general?
  • Do your poems generally stick to traditional poetic forms or do you like to experiment with different structures?
  • Do current events sometimes influence the themes of your poems?
  • Do personal experiences also influence the themes of your poems? If so, to what extent?
  • Does music play a role in your poems, either during the writing process or after the poem is finished? If so, to what extent?
  • Have any of your poems involved collaborations with other artists or writers?
  • If so, how did those relationships come about and what was that experience like for you?
  • Have any of your poems been published anywhere outside of your blog or website?
  • If so, where and when were they published and how was that experience for you overall?
  • Are there any plans to publish any of your poems in print either in anthologies or as part of a chapbook or stand-alone collection?
  • If so, can you tell us anything about those plans, such as the anticipated publication date, working title, etc.?
  • What do you think is the most important element of a good poem?
  • How do you know when a poem is finished?
  • What’s your editing process like?
  • Do you ever experience writer’s block, and if so, how do you overcome it?
  • What role does research play in your writing process?
  • How can poetry be used to promote social change?
  • Do you think poetry can be therapeutic, and if so, how?
  • Are there negative aspects of being a poet that people should be aware of?
  • What poetic devices do you often use in your writing?

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is poetry so important.

Poetry is an incredibly important art form because it allows us to express our deepest emotions and thoughts in a way that’s both beautiful and impactful. Whether through metaphors, rhyme, or other poetic devices, poetry allows us to convey our experiences and ideas in ways that touch others on a profound level.

Its powerful language and imagery can help us make sense of the world around us, connect with others, and even challenge social norms and existing beliefs.

Poetry bridges the gap between our individual experiences and the collective human experience, allowing us to gain a deeper understanding of who we are and what it means to be alive.

What makes a great poet?

A great poet is someone who has a unique and original style of writing, coupled with a profound understanding of human nature and the world around him or her. Great poets also possess a deep connection to their emotions and experiences that enable them to craft powerful and moving texts that resonate with their readers. 

In addition to these important qualities, a great poet must be able to share his or her work in meaningful ways, whether through spoken words or compelling written pieces that capture the essence of humanity. 

What makes a great poet is their ability to create something truly transcendent and enduring that resonates with people from all walks of life.

Can anyone be a poet?

There’s no set path to becoming a poet. Some poets are born with an innate ability to write lyrical, expressive poetry, while others must work hard and hone their craft over time to create beautiful, meaningful works of art. Regardless of how someone becomes a poet, passion for the craft and dedication to using words to evoke emotion and tell stories are most important. 

Anyone can become a poet if they have these key skills, as well as a flair for language and an ear for rhythm and meter. So if you love writing poetry and are inspired by the power of words, you too have what it takes to be a great poet.

Poetry is an enigmatic and often very personal form of art. To get to know a poet, you must be willing to ask intimate questions, be open to honest answers, and see where the conversation takes you. You might be surprised how much there is to learn about this art form – and about the people who create it!

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

As you found this post useful...

Share it on social media!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Photo of author

The Editors – Creative Magazine

How to Write a Poem – A Guide to Writing Poetry for Beginners

This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn a small commission from purchases made through them, at no additional cost to you.

  • teilen    
  • merken    
  • twittern  

Poetry is an ancient form of literary art that has been used in a myriad of places around the world and in different forms. This article will go into some detail about poetry so that you can familiarize yourself with the medium and, if you want, you may even learn about how to write a poem. We will discuss the different types of poems, some terms you should know, some aspects of poetry itself, and even some academic examinations of the medium. So, let’s have a look at poetry and get familiar with it.

Table of Contents

  • 1.1 What Is a Poem?
  • 1.2 The Different Types of Poems
  • 1.3 Some Poetry Terminology to Know
  • 1.4 The Form of Poetry
  • 1.5 The Content of Poetry
  • 1.6 The Codes of Poetry
  • 2.1 What Is a Poem?
  • 2.2 What Is the Easiest Poem Type to Write?
  • 2.3 What Is the Most Famous Poem Type?
  • 2.4 Do Poems Have to Rhyme?
  • 2.5 Is All Poetry Pretentious?

How to Write a Poem

There are many people out there who wonder about how to write poetry, but poetry, like many literary mediums, is one that is best learned through practice and experimentation. You will only truly learn how to write a poem if you start writing poems. However, that being said, it can be helpful to have a few poem-writing tips and explanations of poetic ideas.

The better you understand and are familiar with poetry, the better you may be at writing poetry.

Before we get started and start to properly have a look at many of these ideas, it should be noted that, much like other mediums, one of the most important things that you can do to become more familiar with poetry is to actually read some. You get better at writing prose by reading books and you get better at making movies by watching movies. You learn from seeing what others have done.

Writing Poetry Made Easy

Another very important thing to keep in mind is that when you get started with anything in this world, and writing poetry is no exception, you probably won’t be all that good at first. There’s nothing wrong with this. Leonardo da Vinci didn’t start out by painting the Mona Lisa, he started out when someone put a brush in his hand and showed him how to apply it to a canvas. So, while this may be focused on writing poetry for beginners, it is always worth remembering and reminding yourself that you have to start somewhere.

In fact, you should be pleased if the first things that you write are not all that great. The reason that you should be glad is because when you get started, you are experimenting. You should experiment throughout your artistic endeavors, but when you get started, you will inherently be experimenting. And something about experimentation that many seem to forget is that experiments can often fail.

However, when an experiment fails, it’s up to you to learn from that failure.

If you attempted to write a specific type of poem and discovered that you are not good at a particular aspect of poetry, then you should focus on that particular aspect. If you discover that your vocabulary is lower than you want it to be, start doing a word-a-day calendar. If you discover that you struggle with rhyme, make use of a rhyme dictionary to get you on your feet. If you discover that you can’t stick to a particular form, try a new form. No matter what you try, you will be improving, and that should be what you strive for.

Some poem-writing tips may help you with writing poetry, but you can only truly learn by doing it yourself, seeing where your strengths and weaknesses lie, and then focusing on them. Now, before we look at some more specific aspects of where you may wish to apply your focus when it comes to how to write a poem, let’s first have a look at what a poem is in the first place.

What Is a Poem?

A question like this probably seems rather obvious. We all know what a poem is, right? However, defining a poem is like defining certain parts of speech. If someone asked you to give a definition of a word like “stove”, you could easily respond that it is a kitchen appliance used for cooking. However, if you were asked to define the word “the”, you may have more trouble. It is a definite article, but how do you explain what it actually is? This is a similar issue with a poem.

Many would claim that a poem is a short text that features rhyme. The only problem there is that you can get poems like Paradise Lost , which is hundreds of pages long.

As for rhyme, not all poems rhyme. There are poems that have no structure whatsoever. A poem can be as long or as short as you want it to be, it can or cannot have rhyme, it can make use of interesting typography or it may be laid out like plain text, it could make use of unusual language choices or it could be presented in a straightforward manner, and so on.

Easy Poem Writing Tips

This is why poetry is often defined by what it isn’t. Poetry is a literary genre that is not prose, drama, or prosaic. This means that it is not a novel (although some poems do tell stories), it is not a play (although some plays make use of poetic language), and it is not prosaic (although non-creative writing can still make use of poetic techniques).

This makes defining a poem something rather irritating. This is also why if you were to Google the definition, it would claim that a poem expresses feelings and ideas (which is an incredibly broad thing to say, and one could claim this about any other piece of writing) and that it pays particular attention to diction, imagery, and rhythm. Not all poems make particular use of imaginative diction though, and imagery is generally integral to all forms of writing to a certain degree. Rhythm is also something that does not have to be in a poem.

So, what does all this irritating back and forth mean for someone who wants to learn how to write poetry? Well, it means that there really aren’t any rules that you should be overly worried about. A poem is whatever you want it to be. If you want to stick to rigid poetic forms, then you can do that, and we will discuss a few different types of poems below to help with understanding them. However, if you also just want to write in a free verse style and make it up as you go, there’s nothing stopping you.

But let’s have a look at those different types of poems in case you want to try out a specific one.

The Different Types of Poems

Let’s have a look at a few different varieties here. There are many different types of poems out in the wide world, and many of them are quite specific to certain cultures. Some have rigid rules and others do not. We are only going to have a look at a few examples today, but there are many others out there. So, let’s have a look at six of them:

  • Sonnet: Likely the most famous form in the English language. This form makes use of a fourteen-line structure that includes a specific rhyme scheme. The most common of them are usually either Elizabethan/Shakespearean sonnets (ABAB CDCD EFEF GG) or Italian/Petrarchan sonnets (ABBAABBA CDE CDE). You can, of course, use your own rhyme scheme though.
  • Ballad : These poetic forms are very versatile and, as such, have been used in a lot of contemporary music. They do not necessarily have a set number of lines, but they are usually structured around quatrains (four-line stanzas) and they make use of an ABAB or ABCB rhyme scheme. They also usually tell stories.
  • Acrostic : This is a rather sweet poetic form that entails a specific form in which the first letter of each line is used to spell something out. This means that the poem can be read both horizontally and vertically (or at least one line can be read vertically). It isn’t often considered a “serious” poetic form, but you get to decide what you want to try.
  • Limerick : This type of poetry is often used for humorous reasons. It makes use of a five-line structure with an AABBA rhyme scheme. These simple poems have often been used to tell jokes where the first four lines establish a setup, and the final line ends it on a funny quip of some kind.
  • Haiku : This is a Japanese form of poetry that makes use of a specific syllable structure. They use three lines, but the syllable count on those lines is what’s important. The first has five, the second has seven, and the third has five. They don’t have to rhyme and are usually about presenting a simple thought or feeling.
  • Free verse : There are no rules to free verse because you can do whatever you like. It can have rhyme, or it can have no rhyme. The same goes for everything else. Have as many lines as you want, as much or as little rhythm, the use of unusual typography or ordinary typography. Do whatever you want!

How to Write Poetry Easily

This has been a short list of some of the different types of poems that are out there in the world. However, because all of them, aside from free verse, have rules of some sort that are meant to be followed, they can be great for writing poetry for beginners. Having specific rules and structures can be very helpful when starting out, and the formal constraints may lead you to make some creative decisions. So, try them out!

Some Poetry Terminology to Know

When learning how to write a poem it can often be beneficial to know the main terms that are used in this medium. Let’s have a look at some of the most common of them all because when reading about poetry in other places, there is often the expectation that you will already know these terms.

  • Stanza : This is the number of lines that are grouped together, and it can be compared to a paragraph in prose writing. It is separated with a line break from other stanzas.
  • Couplet : This is a stanza that makes use of two lines.
  • Tercet : This is a stanza that makes use of three lines.
  • Quatrain : This is a stanza that makes use of four lines.
  • Cinquain : This is a stanza that makes use of five lines.
  • Sestet : This is a stanza that makes use of six lines.
  • Syllable : A single sound within a word, for example, “apple” has two: “ah” and “pl”.
  • Meter : T he use of both stressed and unstressed syllables in a poem in a set pattern of some kind, the most common is iambic pentameter.
  • Rhyme scheme : The use of rhyme in a specific pattern, generally at the end of each line.
  • Typography : The arrangement of the lines themselves to give the poem a specific shape.

These are some of the most common terms used in poetry. There are many others, but these should provide a good start for beginners to understand the basics of poetry terminology. However, when it comes to how to write poetry, it is best to learn about the specific form and content of poetry.

While these two ideas inform one another and cannot actually be separated, we are going to look at them each in turn.

The Form of Poetry

What is the form and why is it important? The form is the actual writing part of the poem, and this is juxtaposed against the content, which is what the poem is about . Think of it like the form being the physical thing and the content is what is evoked in your head. This is important to understand when writing poetry for beginners.

How to Write Poetry

There are many different ways in which you can approach the form of the poetry that you want to write. You need to make the decision about your own structure, word choice, and the use of any literary techniques. Why may you want to use these? Is there a specific purpose? Let’s look at a rather simple style of poetry, the acrostic poem (the kind in which you spell out a word using the first letter of every line). Let’s make one up here:

H aving a splendid time this

e vening while hoping to

l ight up the fireplace to

l iven up this evening before the

o pera gets started later.

As you can see, the poem spells out the word “hello”, but was there a reason to do this or was it merely an exercise? On my part, as the writer of it, this was simply for illustrative purposes, but writing something like this can be fun and a challenge. For instance, I personally needed to make use of enjambment when I wrote this to allow it to flow as a single sentence (this is the way in which each line runs into the next without requiring a pause). Writing something like this is rather quick and easy. It’s also fun. There are those who may claim that it is not “good” poetry in the sense that it isn’t really about anything, but when playing around with formal techniques, this can often be simply for enjoyment. Take other formal literary devices as an example of this.

If I decide to make use of alliteration (the repetition of consonants) or assonance (the repetition of vowels), then am I doing it for a particular reason or because it sounds nice?

If I write a line such as: “Sally said she seriously shaved the seal”, am I doing so for some deeper reason or because it sounds nice to say something like this out loud? When it comes to how to write a poem, a poet needs to think about the why of every decision. Why have you chosen to write it this way? Why have you used these techniques? Why have you used this typography?

One of the distinguishing things about poetry is that it can often be focused on the use of language itself. Language becomes important. Why did you choose one particular word over another? Let’s look at word choice very quickly. If I wrote a poem about someone dying, what word do I use? Words like passed away, killed, died, and murdered all imply that a person is no longer alive, but they all have very different tones behind them.

This, however, means that a poet can play with language. Murder is done maliciously, but to be “killed” is often more neutral. So, this is why we usually use the word “murder” when a person kills another person. But what if I want to write about someone who had cancer? Cancer is not malicious; it does not think. However, it can feel like it is. So, you may want to use a term like “ murdered by cancer”, and this is also why we use euphemisms like the “battle against cancer”, even though cancer is not a hostile enemy and rather a biological error that inadvertently kills its host organism.

Poem Writing Tips

Your word choice means a lot. Why use one word after another? Also, why use something like personification or oxymorons? These ideas can help one a lot when one is trying to portray something through the formal words that have been chosen. A “silent scream” tells us a lot even though those two words do not technically go together as they are an oxymoron. This does not mean that they are incorrect, but they express a feeling. In addition, our earlier example of cancer can make use of personification to make it feel like a person. If we use terms like “the cancer marched throughout her body”, that use of “marched” is something cancer cannot do, but as a personified term, we understand.

When writing poetry, word choice is so important. How you use those words is also important. Think about what you are trying to say and think closely about the words you use and the techniques you use with them, Take a famous poet like ee cummings as an example. In one of his poems, he uses “onetwothreefour” as a word. This is obviously multiple words, but the spaces have been removed. He did this to simulate the idea of rapid gunfire. There is no time for spaces here. These are techniques that you too can use.

Other poets who make clever use of the form include people like Rupi Kaur. Her work makes incredible use of typography. Her poems are arranged in shapes.

For instance, you could arrange your lines in such a way that they form a heart. If you were writing a love poem, the shape of a heart could work. You may also simply want to break your typography up to create an unusual and chilling effect. So long as you think about what you’re doing and why. Now, throughout this section, there has been a focus on the form, but the content always comes through too. This is because you cannot actually separate them. The form you use changes the meaning of what you are saying, but let’s also have a look at specific things that you can do with the content of your poem.

The Content of Poetry

Poems are generally about something. They don’t have to be, but many poets, especially young poets, want their work to be meaningful. So, just like with the form, you need to really think about what you want your poem to be about. What is the meaning of it? It can often help to think about the meaning of a poem before you start writing it, and this could be considered an important poem writing tip, but many also like to simply wing it. Neither of those is more or less valid than the other.

You may, for instance, want to make use of metaphor and allegory. Let us return to that idea of a cancer poem from before. We spoke about how the form can allow us to see cancer as an enemy combatant. Well, what if we rolled with that? What if we structured our entire poem around the metaphor of warfare? We could refer to the radiation treatment as reinforcements and the tumors as enemy fortresses. Or, we could even combine reality with our allegorical idea and refer to radiation treatment as a form of nuclear weapon that we are launching against the enemy because we have no other choice left to us.

Writing Poetry

Here, we have established a modern warfare-oriented metaphor. This allows us to personify the battle against cancer as a figurative battle. Do we win the battle? Do we lose the battle? In real warfare, the land is often left scarred by artillery. After chemotherapy, the body can be left weak, frail, and full of new problems. We can combine these two into a metaphorical after-battle in which the battlefield of the body is left devastated and will need many years to recover if it can even recover at all.

However, you may also wish to steer clear of metaphors. Sometimes a poem is best when something is simply stated. A fantastic example of this is a poem called Muliebrity by Sujata Bhatt. In this poem, the author speaks about seeing a woman picking up cow droppings, and she sees this person as immensely feminine (the title of the poem even means feminine). The author also specifically states that she does not want this person to be a metaphor, they were real. In this case, the poem is recounting reality rather than obfuscating it behind metaphor.

It’s up to you. Do you want it to be metaphorical? Do you want it to speak plainly? Do you want it to be deeply cryptic and symbolic?

There is no correct or incorrect answer here. The work of Rupi Kaur, which is generally straightforward and speaks with plain language, is just as valid as the work of T.S. Eliot, who wrote in a way that can often be so confusing that many do not agree on the meanings of whole sections of what he wrote. It’s your choice, but it’s worth thinking about.

The Codes of Poetry

The last thing that is worth thinking about is something a little more academic. Many creative people do not want to think about the more academic side of things as it tends to be very grounded and/or can be very complicated. However, it can be beneficial. For this, let’s look very briefly at the work of one man: Juri Lotman. This man analyzed poetry, and he created a comprehensive system to analyze poetry. These concepts are useful when it comes to analysis, but they are also useful when writing poetry. They can help you figure out what you are writing about. We are only going to look at his basic ideas today though. We are going to, very briefly, look at intratextual, intertextual, and extratextual codes in poetry.

Writing Poetry for Beginners

Anything intratextual refers to what happens within a poem. Have you maintained the rhyme scheme throughout your poem, or have you changed it? Why have you done so? Did you want to stick to the tradition you had established, or did you want to break away from it? Whereas intertextual refers to how a poem relates to other poems and texts. So, have you referenced other texts in your poem? Should you? Should you rather not? Why have you done so? As for extratextual, this refers to a poem relating to things outside the poem.

Do you refer to a specific place, time period, and so on? Why do you do that? Do you want your poem to be grounded in a specific time and place or do you want it to attempt to be universal in some sense?

These concepts go a lot deeper, and if they are interesting to you, there is a lot of academic material out there that can help you to become a very different kind of poet. We mentioned T.S. Eliot earlier, and he was not just a poet, he was also an academic who wrote about poetry and other literary mediums. His work was deeply informed by his academia. You do not need to emulate this, but if you too want to try and write in a similar sense to his work, then perhaps you should give it a try. Always remember though: it’s your poem, you get to choose what you do with it.

How to write a poem is often a long and complicated situation, or it can be an easy one. Sometimes, one may wish to focus intently on the form of the text and other times, one may want to simply express oneself. This article went into several aspects about poetry for that very reason. We looked at different types of poems, some important terms to know and understand, as well as a look at the form and content of poetry. We even ended off with a few academic discussions that may help to understand how one approaches a poem. However, the only way to truly learn how to write a poem is to start writing one yourself. So, pick up that pen and get to work!

Frequently Asked Questions

Defining a poem is a very difficult thing. A poem is often defined against what it is not because a poem is not a prose, dramatic, or prosaic text. This means that it is not like a novel or short story, it is not like a play, and it is not non-literary writing, such as the writing on a legal document. A poem is a text that generally makes use of a form that is non-standard. It can be far shorter than other literary forms, but not necessarily, and it often makes use of rhyme, the expression of feelings/ideas, and generally entails a close focus on the form of the text.

What Is the Easiest Poem Type to Write?

The ease at which something can be written can vary between people, but in a theoretical sense, one could claim that the fewer the number of rules in a poetry form the easier it would be to write. If a poem requires the use of specific syllable counts, iambic pentameter, and a formalized rhyme scheme, then it may be considered harder to write. For this reason, free verse poetry may be the easiest to write because it has no formalized rules. This level of freedom can be hard for new writers though, as rigid rules allow for something to aim towards. So, this question is a difficult one to answer.

What Is the Most Famous Poem Type?

In all likelihood, the most famous type of poem in the English-speaking world is the sonnet. One cannot claim universality about the fame of poetry types because, for instance, the haiku is likely more famous than the sonnet in Japan. The reason that sonnets are likely the most famous in the English language is because of their close association with William Shakespeare. Many of the most famous sonnets ever committed to English came from the quill of Shakespeare. This form makes use of fourteen lines and a specific rhyme scheme (in the Shakespearean tradition, that rhyme scheme is ABAB CDCD EFEF GG).

Do Poems Have to Rhyme?

There is a strong association between poetry and rhyme, but this association is not actually a necessary thing. Many formalized types of poetry make use of specific rhyme schemes, such as sonnets and limericks, but there are also types of poems that are based on syllable count, like haikus. In addition, there are forms of poetry, like free verse poems, that have no rules at all. You can make them rhyme or not make them rhyme, they can have stanzas or have no stanzas, and they can include strange typography or be ordinary. In conclusion, poetry does not need to rhyme.

Is All Poetry Pretentious?

Many people tend to believe that poetry is pretentious, and this does not come out of nowhere. The reason that there is a strong belief that poetry is pretentious often comes from education. Those who want to teach poetry often believe that supposedly deep or sophisticated poetry is the best poetry to teach, and this leads to the teaching of ancient poems, like the works of Shakespeare, or extremely advanced and deeply reference-heavy poetry, like the works of T.S. Eliot. Poetry has a long history of being used for protest and expression purposes, and these uses are not pretentious at all. Sadly, school has taught many that poetry is not for them.

charlene lewis

In 2005, Charlene completed her wellness degrees in therapeutic aromatherapy and reflexology at the International School of Reflexology and Meridian Therapy. She worked for a company offering corporate wellness programs for several years before opening her own therapy practice. In 2015, she was asked by a digital marketer friend to join her company as a content creator, and it was here that she discovered her enthusiasm for writing. Since entering the world of content creation, she has gained a lot of experience over the years writing about various topics such as beauty, health, wellness, travel, crafting, and much more. Due to various circumstances, she had to give up her therapy practice and now works as a freelance writer. Since she is a very creative person and as a balance to writing likes to be active in various areas of art and crafts, the activity at is perfect for her to contribute their knowledge and experience in various creative topics.

Learn more about Charlene Lewis and about us .

Similar Posts

Rhythm in Art – How Artists Achieve Dynamism and Harmony

Rhythm in Art – How Artists Achieve Dynamism and Harmony

Line in Art – How Artists Use Linear Elements

Line in Art – How Artists Use Linear Elements

How to Price Your Art – Our Easy-to-Follow Art Pricing Guide

How to Price Your Art – Our Easy-to-Follow Art Pricing Guide

Pattern in Art – Discover the Four Main Types of Design Motifs

Pattern in Art – Discover the Four Main Types of Design Motifs

Unity and Variety in Art – How Artists Employ Visual Elements

Unity and Variety in Art – How Artists Employ Visual Elements

Best Art Podcasts – A List of Great Podcasts About Art History

Best Art Podcasts – A List of Great Podcasts About Art History

Leave a reply cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Pick Me Up Poetry logo black

Pick Me Up Poetry

  • March 17, 2022

23+ Epic Poems About Questions: Asking And Seeking

There are endless possibilities for what you can write about when it comes to poetry. You can explore your feelings, reflect on the world around you, or even capture a moment in time. But one topic that’s especially intriguing questions. 

What do they mean to us? What do they reveal about our lives and the world around us? So if you’re curious about what questions can reveal, be sure to read on! In this post, we’ll take a look at some poems that explore questions in creative and thought-provoking ways.

poem writing questions

What Are The Best Poems About Questions?

Sawdust by sharon bryan, fragments by l.l. barkat, cracked by megan willome, ghazal 838 by rumi, translated by nader khalili, miracles by walt whitman, questioning life by suraj shrestha, questions by chandler, question by may swenson, night questions by sumita chakraborty, a question by robert frost, on the eve of your thirteen birthday for jeffrey by laura boggess, my treasure by arthur weir, in cloudy weather by ruby archer, in the orchard by muriel stuart, the secret of it by amos russel wells, mortality by william knox, plain questions by e.n.s., confluents by christina rossetti, i reason, earth is short by emily dickinson, love is all by ruby archer, what is life by john clare, sea-birds by elizabeth akers, saudade by jen rose.

poem writing questions

Questions are at the heart of poems. They can be simple or complex, but they always lead to more questions.   What question will you ask next?

Related To Poems About Questions

  • poems about uncertainty
  • poems about understanding

Browse Collections By Category

Select from our entire catalogue of poetry collections:, top articles:.

A-Brief-History -of-Poetry

From Homer To Hip Hop: A Brief History Of Poetry​ (5000BC- Present)


What is Slam Poetry?: A beginners guide


Inspiration Awaits: 51+ Poetry Writing Prompts


57+ websites that will pay for your poetry in 2023

Popular poetry collections.


7+ Poems About Health and Wellness: The Mind-body Connection


5+ Powerful Poems About Emotional Abuse: The Power of Words


7+ Challenging Poems About Drug Abuse: Beneath The Surface


13+ Interesting Poems About Feminism: Sisters In Solidarity

Jump to navigation Skip to content

Search form

  • P&W on Facebook
  • P&W on Twitter
  • P&W on Instagram

Find details about every creative writing competition—including poetry contests, short story competitions, essay contests, awards for novels, grants for translators, and more—that we’ve published in the Grants & Awards section of Poets & Writers Magazine during the past year. We carefully review the practices and policies of each contest before including it in the Writing Contests database, the most trusted resource for legitimate writing contests available anywhere.

Find a home for your poems, stories, essays, and reviews by researching the publications vetted by our editorial staff. In the Literary Magazines database you’ll find editorial policies, submission guidelines, contact information—everything you need to know before submitting your work to the publications that share your vision for your work.

Whether you’re pursuing the publication of your first book or your fifth, use the Small Presses database to research potential publishers, including submission guidelines, tips from the editors, contact information, and more.

Research more than one hundred agents who represent poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers, plus details about the kinds of books they’re interested in representing, their clients, and the best way to contact them.

Trying to get your work published can feel like wandering in a maze. If you are running into one dead end after another, not sure which way to turn, Poets & Writers can demystify the process and help you reach your destination—publication.

Every week a new publishing professional shares advice, anecdotes, insights, and new ways of thinking about writing and the business of books.

Stay informed with reports from the world of writing contests, including news of extended deadlines, recent winners of notable awards, new contest announcements, interviews with winners, and more.

Since our founding in 1970, Poets & Writers has served as an information clearinghouse of all matters related to writing. While the range of inquiries has been broad, common themes have emerged over time. Our Top Topics for Writers addresses the most popular and pressing issues, including literary agents, copyright, MFA programs, and self-publishing.

Our series of subject-based handbooks (PDF format; $4.99 each) provide information and advice from authors, literary agents, editors, and publishers. Now available: The Poets & Writers Guide to Publicity and Promotion, The Poets & Writers Guide to the Book Deal, The Poets & Writers Guide to Literary Agents, The Poets & Writers Guide to MFA Programs, and The Poets & Writers Guide to Writing Contests.

Find a home for your work by consulting our searchable databases of writing contests, literary magazines, small presses, literary agents, and more.

Subscribe to Poets & Writers Magazine for as little as $1.67 per issue

Poets & Writers lists readings, workshops, and other literary events held in cities across the country. Whether you are an author on book tour or the curator of a reading series, the Literary Events Calendar can help you find your audience.

Get the Word Out is a new publicity incubator for debut fiction writers and poets.

Research newspapers, magazines, websites, and other publications that consistently publish book reviews using the Review Outlets database, which includes information about publishing schedules, submission guidelines, fees, and more.

Well over ten thousand poets and writers maintain listings in this essential resource for writers interested in connecting with their peers, as well as editors, agents, and reading series coordinators looking for authors. Apply today to join the growing community of writers who stay in touch and informed using the Poets & Writers Directory.

Download our free app to find readings and author events near you; explore indie bookstores, libraries, and other places of interest to writers; and connect with the literary community in your city or town.

Let the world know about your work by posting your events on our literary events calendar, apply to be included in our directory of writers, and more.

Subscribe to Poets & Writers Magazine for as little as $1.67 per issue

Find a writers group to join or create your own with Poets & Writers Groups. Everything you need to connect, communicate, and collaborate with other poets and writers—all in one place.

Find information about more than two hundred full- and low-residency programs in creative writing in our MFA Programs database, which includes details about deadlines, funding, class size, core faculty, and more. Also included is information about more than fifty MA and PhD programs.

Whether you are looking to meet up with fellow writers, agents, and editors, or trying to find the perfect environment to fuel your writing practice, the Conferences & Residencies is the essential resource for information about well over three hundred writing conferences, writers residencies, and literary festivals around the world.

Find information about venues that host readings and author events, including bookstores, bars, cafes, libraries, literary arts centers, and more. The Reading Venues database includes details about how to schedule your own reading, admission fees, audience size, parking and transit information, and more.

Discover historical sites, independent bookstores, literary archives, writing centers, and writers spaces in cities across the country using the Literary Places database—the best starting point for any literary journey, whether it’s for research or inspiration.

Search for jobs in education, publishing, the arts, and more within our free, frequently updated job listings for writers and poets.

Poets & Writers Live is an initiative developed in response to interviews and discussions with writers from all over the country. When we asked what Poets & Writers could do to support their writing practice, time and again writers expressed a desire for a more tangible connection to other writers. So, we came up with a living, breathing version of what Poets & Writers already offers: Poets & Writers Live.

Establish new connections and enjoy the company of your peers using our searchable databases of MFA programs and writers retreats, apply to be included in our directory of writers, and more.

Subscribe to Poets & Writers Magazine for as little as $1.67 per issue

Bring the literary world to your door—at half the newsstand price. Available in print and digital editions, Poets & Writers Magazine is a must-have for writers who are serious about their craft.

View the contents and read select essays, articles, interviews, and profiles from the current issue of the award-winning Poets & Writers Magazine .

Read three decades of essays, articles, interviews, profiles, and other select content from Poets & Writers Magazine .

View the covers and contents of every issue of Poets & Writers Magazine , from the current edition all the way back to the first black-and-white issue in 1987.

In our weekly series of craft essays, some of the best and brightest minds in contemporary literature explore their craft in compact form, articulating their thoughts about creative obsessions and curiosities in a working notebook of lessons about the art of writing.

The Time Is Now offers weekly writing prompts in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction to help you stay committed to your writing practice throughout the year. Sign up to get The Time Is Now, as well as a weekly book recommendation for guidance and inspiration, delivered to your inbox.

Every week a new author shares books, art, music, writing prompts, films—anything and everything—that has inspired and shaped the creative process.

Watch videos, listen to audio clips, and view slideshows related to articles and features published in Poets & Writers Magazine .

Ads in Poets & Writers Magazine and on are the best ways to reach a readership of serious poets and literary prose writers. Our audience trusts our editorial content and looks to it, and to relevant advertising, for information and guidance.

Start, renew, or give a subscription to Poets & Writers Magazine ; change your address; check your account; pay your bill; report a missed issue; contact us.

Peruse paid listings of writing contests, conferences, workshops, editing services, calls for submissions, and more.

Poets & Writers is pleased to provide free subscriptions to Poets & Writers Magazine to award-winning young writers and to high school creative writing teachers for use in their classrooms.

Read select articles from the award-winning magazine and consult the most comprehensive listing of literary grants and awards, deadlines, and prizewinners available in print.

Subscribe to Poets & Writers Magazine for as little as $1.67 per issue

Each year the Readings & Workshops program provides support to hundreds of writers participating in literary readings and conducting writing workshops. Learn more about this program, our special events, projects, and supporters, and how to contact us.

Find information about how Poets & Writers provides support to hundreds of writers participating in literary readings and conducting writing workshops.

Subscribe to Poets & Writers Magazine for as little as $1.67 per issue

  • Subscribe Now

Ten Questions

Read weekly interviews with authors to learn the inside stories of how their books were written, edited, and published; insights into the creative process; the best writing advice they’ve ever heard; and more.

Ten Questions for Kimberly Grey

poem writing questions

“ I’m very much a write-when-it-comes kind of writer.” —Kimberly Grey, author of  A Mother Is an Intellectual Thing

Ten Questions for Subhaga Crystal Bacon

poem writing questions

“ It’s okay for you to reveal more of yourself in your poetry.” —Subhaga Crystal Bacon

Ten Questions for Sigrid Nunez

poem writing questions

“Never assume the reader is not as intelligent as you are.” —Sigrid Nunez, author of  The Vulnerables

Ten Questions for Jim Redmond

poem writing questions

“Write toward what you want to discover.” —Jim Redmond, author of Because You Previously Liked or Played

Ten Questions for Claudia Acevedo-Quiñones

poem writing questions

“I was writing this hybrid lyric thing that was hard to fall into a rhythm with at first.” —Claudia Acevedo-Quiñones, author of  The Hurricane Book: A Lyric History

Ten Questions for Curtis Chin

poem writing questions

“Have fun. Make friends.” —Curtis Chin, author of Everything I Learned, I Learned in a Chinese Restaurant

Ten Questions for Justin Torres

poem writing questions

“I was stretching to become a different kind of writer, and that took time.” —Justin Torres, author of Blackouts

Ten Questions for Shannon Sanders

poem writing questions

“I felt that I knew the characters deeply after years of thinking about these stories.” —Shannon Sanders, author of Company

Ten Questions for Isle McElroy

poem writing questions

“Celebrate the small victories!” —Isle McElroy, author of People Collide

Ten Questions for Cintia Santana

poem writing questions

“For me, giving language to something, finding a name for it, enacts a kind of metabolic process.” —Cintia Santana, author of  The Disordered Alphabet

Ten Questions for Heather Lanier

poem writing questions

“Just keep listening to the work, one poem at a time.” —Heather Lanier, author of Psalms of Unknowing

Ten Questions for Myriam Gurba

poem writing questions

“I tend to binge-write.” —Myriam Gurba, author of Creep: Accusations and Confessions

Ten Questions for Megan Kamalei Kakimoto

poem writing questions

“I think that’s so much of the pleasure of writing for me, the opportunity to be fearless on the page.” —Megan Kamalei Kakimoto

Ten Questions for Edgar Kunz

poem writing questions

“Don’t trap yourself into false models of production and worth.” —Edgar Kunz, author of  Fixer

Ten Questions for Robyn Schiff

poem writing questions

“Read more than you write.” —Robyn Schiff, author of Information Desk: An Epic

Ten Questions for Alise Alousi

poem writing questions

“I love when a poem is getting there , when I can’t stop coming back to it.” —Alise Alousi, author of  What to Count

Ten Questions for Jamel Brinkley

poem writing questions

“One of the pleasures of writing short stories for me is the surprise of an ending.” —Jamel Brinkley, author of  Witness

Ten Questions for JoAnna Novak

poem writing questions

“You have time.” —JoAnna Novak, author of Contradiction Days: An Artist on the Verge of Motherhood

Ten Questions for Caleb Azumah Nelson

poem writing questions

“I’m always trying to leave room in my writing for surprise.” —Caleb Azumah Nelson, author of  Small Worlds

Ten Questions for Sarah Rose Etter

poem writing questions

“Finish the draft. Nothing else matters.” —Sarah Rose Etter, author of  Ripe

Ten Questions for Lillian-Yvonne Bertram

poem writing questions

“ I didn’t set out to write exactly this book.” —Lillian-Yvonne Bertram, author of  Negative Money

Ten Questions for Stacy Jane Grover

poem writing questions

“I had to learn through writing the book how to discipline my creativity so that I could write whenever and wherever I needed to.” —Stacy Jane Grover, author of Tar Hollow Trans

Ten Questions for Nathan Go

poem writing questions

“I believe that writing is just a form of dreaming.” —Nathan Go, author of Forgiving Imelda Marcos

Ten Questions for Helen Schulman

poem writing questions

"I write as often and for as long as I can.” —Helen Schulman, author of Lucky Dogs

Ten Questions for Airea D. Matthews

poem writing questions

“ I am constantly questioning, resisting, studying, accepting, and wondering—all of which I believe to be the hallmarks of the writer’s life.” —Airea D. Matthews, author of  Bread and Circus

  • Documentation
  • Learn WordPress

Tap Poet

Poems About Questions And Answers: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry (Shakespeare, Maya Angelou, Sappho-Inspired)

You've asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative poems about questions and answers in the styles of William Shakespeare, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, Dante Alighieri, Maya Angelou, and, Sappho.

These poems were inspired by the greats, and we have done our best to emulate their style, tone and cadence!

Here they are!

Poems About Questions and Answers In The Style Of William Shakespeare

Amidst Thine Queries, Answers Lay to Sleep

Oft doth I ponder on the whispers of the Fates, How ne'er a chance encounter would on mine ear abate; Yet questions lay unbidden, answers in shadow cloak'd, To find the truth within their depths, with ardor I am stoked.

Alas! The riddles that adorn my thoughts like gilded frame, And conjure phantoms o' knowledge that mock me just the same; A myriad of queries, confounding my poor brain, Respite absconds and flees aloof, leaving me in pain.

Hast thou all marv'led at this obfuscation? That oft we seek questions' end, yet answers flee elation? To grasp a fleeting glimmer of certainty, 'tis true Doth lose its luster in our grasp as morning dew too soon.

Wherefore dost wisdom shy from seeking hands? Hence seek I refuge from this plight amidst cryptic lands; ‘Tis there a lonely scholar finds solace in his quest, For where wisdom's journey ends is when he'll rest.

Oh! Tell me Muse, if Thou wouldst grant but one request: Shall there be solace found when sanctuary's possessed? Upon life's highway shall answers be arrayed? Or must we wander blind 'til twilight leads astray?

Thus wand'rest I through life's bewilder'd landscape vast And clutch at strands of meaning fleeting as they pass; Perchance to catch an inkling that may answer bring And fill my soul with understanding till its hymn can sing?

The tapestry woven by time upon our hearts betrays The finer threads of truth – more delicate than fate; For love and loss both intertwine through days so long and cold And in their broidered patterns a story yet untold.

But hark! A voice from distant stars doth sing anew, And whispers soothingly, “Fear not, brave poet true!” For answers lie in wait and dance upon the wind, Like leaves of autumn's calling, their knowledge to rescind.

To seize the answer's tender hand, one must not solely reach; Seek patience in this journey, for wisdom has much to teach. In time shall truth unfold herself and let her visage show, Envoys from the Fates entwined, ever to bestow.

For all who wander ‘twixt these songs of questions and replies I pray thee not lose heart nor sight ‘midst tangled mysteries; In seeking may we find our peace with questions yet unasked, Amidst thine queries, answers lay – a future's wisdom masked.

Poems About Questions and Answers In The Style Of Sylvia Plath

What do the questions say when they beckon at night, Fingering the hem of my sleep, like coy lovers? In the velvet darkness they hum and tremble, Tip-toeing on shivers of exhaled breaths.

Their shadows, ever changing, carve their path Through the moon-slivered forests of my heart. Begging to be found, they flit from room to room, Their fingers trailing across doors and window panes.

Mouths stretched agape in silent screams, Each question reveals its cavernous hunger. Tantalizing thirst draws forth answers, Siphoned from wellsprings buried deep within.

Oh, how those answers crave the light of day! To be pulled from dank caverns––rescued and embraced. And yet I cage them in an attic of fear, Where dust collects on lockboxes long rusted shut.

My trembling hands hold each key engraved with fate; Shall I turn each lock and free these hidden truths? Or allow them to rot away, consumed by time, Leaving only crumbling embers behind?

What happens when answers are no longer sought? Do they wither as wilted flowers in their caskets? Or transform themselves into something new— Reborn as questions that have forgotten themselves?

At dawn's rich arrival I clench my fists; A battle cry sounds somewhere deep inside. I wield salvation or damnation with equal weight; The choice is mine alone to make.

In this house of echoes where spirits dance, The creaking floors recount stories left untold. But perhaps it's time to answer questions' call, Shatter rusty locks and let escape what lies within.

Poems About Questions and Answers In The Style Of Ted Hughes

When the wind-whipped raven black night births a new day, And the eastern red horizon gapes wide with hungry jaws of fire. Shall I seek within the amber glow, half-glazed like doughnut glaze, A question asked, a question poised — as though thrown by dawn?

An astral voice makes a thunderous fuss, it whispers ancient questions, Which I flounder for in the vast recesses of forgotten childhood dreams. In my heart do these conundrums, these constellated forms Leave an absence like an empty chest, like a stolen treasure trove?

If this is all one tapestry of atoms and crossed wires, then What celestial thread was used to sew creatures such as us? Why are we left with pockets filled with voids and gaps, Like rocks in our shoes, stones upon which we stumble?

Once upon an abyss of blackness and time — or so they tell us — A great explosion brought forth all things that ever were or are. But did this happen just once in some deep past? Or can it be that now we straddle both ends of time's infinite speck?

Can all come to nothing? Does everything mean something? Where rests the dolphin, trapped beneath layers of murky ocean? What angels have assembled feathered wings for weary hearts To embark on eternal flight into that sun-kissed realm?

Is this world but shadow born from some lofty light unending, A vague reality spun from myth or unfulfilled desires? And should I want answers to these questions from above, From Whom shall I beseech them? To what gods shall I cry out?

Does not curiosity guide thy hands when plunged into dark chasms unknown? Are we not driven by inquiry, as oars drive boats through rivers? Oftentimes, when I have tried to ask, I find my questions hidden, Like the spider's legs splayed across the frosted pane.

Yet now upon this day, with dawn's light reflecting, In brilliant beams of sunlit gold and glimmers of cosmic dust. I realize wherefore these queries are placed within us — To give way to a burning quest for answers that drives our very core.

And in this query, we delve deeper into ourselves, The shadows we traverse reveal the gleaming bones beneath. Once a question asked enters our very soul, ever bold, It usurps the king of cynicism and beckons forth new truths.

So grant me not simple solutions that drift away like sand through fingers. Instead, let us embark on this endless journey, Seeking questions never answered in realms still unexplored. For it is not for answers that we live — but rather for these wondrous queries.

Poems About Questions and Answers In The Style Of Dante Alighieri

In search of truth we wander, wearied souls, Among the many paths that cross and twist, And oft one finds amongst the mists and fogs, Questions unanswered, enigmatic wraiths.

Our Father willed that we investigate The order of this realm he did create, But in seeking thus, remain shackled, caged By our inability to unveil the mysteries hidden.

One night I pondered a riddle, a quandary most intricate: Of answers to questions untold and veiled within shadows. Ah, Dante! His Divine Comedy sang sweetly through my mind, Offering such conundrums an infernal embrace.

I wandered in a forest dark and stark, Like Dante's own, where there was no clear way: Onward I went through thorny growths and foggy gusts That whispered tales of those who tarried long.

“O moon! What say you to these endless queries?” I asked as she emerged from shadowed clouds. Her pallid face apologetic seemed: No answer came but only comfort cold.

Suddenly appeared the poet great himself! From deep within his terza rima world, He crossed with ease into my own despair To guide me through this maze of doubts and fears.

Frail human hearts require earthly love; They need their faith reaffirmed or else despair. Without such proof they tumble forthwith down; They lose their way in sorrow-thoughts profound.

“Tu sei il mio maestro e il mio autore,” “You are my master and my author true,” With reverence I cried unto his shade. “Well have I studied your celestial spheres.”

We climbed together through purgatorial hills; We watched as wicked fiends deformed were laid low; We scaled the heavenly heights and found our rest, And pondered there without the fear of loss.

“Questions, answers, all are bound up tight In circle’s center,” Dante mused to me. “The more you seek, the further thus you stray; The closer you embrace, the harder they fly.”

Anointing his wisdom with my tears, I found within a measure of relief. I cannot grasp with these hands mortal still To strip away the shroud that masks all truth.

Yet that path I tread, though sometimes lost, In questioning I find my purpose now: For in this search for meaning lies release— To seek and strive for answers yet unseen.

Poems About Questions and Answers In The Style Of Maya Angelou

Oh, the Questions that dance in the air Like fireflies twined in the softest despair, A beacon of hope, a flicker of doubt, Each one beckoning, drawing us out.

From where do they rise and where do they go? Why do they tease us so? The Answers we seek, too many to count, In this waltzing of thoughts we are forced to surmount.

The echoes of laughter, like silver on mist, Tell tales of our youth and all we've dismissed. How did we lose that innocence sweet, To wander down paths with less fiery feet?

Do our hearts grow more heavy or simply turn cold As we shuffle along through life's manifold? In the cadence of heartbeats as seasons unfold, We'll search for a truth blindingly bold.

To whom do we offer our burdens so great, When silence descends and all shadows abate? As tender as whispers, come questions anew: Who is it that crafts each pain that ensues?

Is this life but a test, a cruel game to play, With rules left unseen till it fades away? Or are there forces beyond our grasp tight Fulfilling the score with compassionate light?

Yet still there's one question whose answer eludes: Are these gifts from above or wild interludes? For now, let us rest in slumber so deep As silent answers embrace us in sleep.

Poems About Questions and Answers In The Style Of Sappho

To what end do we quest, Ol' Zeus? For some small knowledge or greater truth? In what form shall answers emerge, Silken whispers or thunderous roar.

Fireflies waltz in twilight shadow, Dreams flees from restless mind's grasp And I achingly await, Breath abated for your decree.

If I must traverse Elysian fields, Count the blades of grass on Earth's green breast Or plumb the depths of Poseidon's realm, So be it, O Noble Lord of Heaven.

Is it not written that in seeking we shall find? Perchance to uncover fragments wrapped in mystery, Those enigmatic shards scattered wide As remnants of our past and prophecy.

In search of answers, I ask but this: How long must I wander in the anxious dark? How far until a gleaming beacon beckons, To eager hearts and minds awoken.

Shall a fallen star or golden fleece Be enough to satisfy my soul's desire? Or will only revelation divine — Manna bestowed by immortal hands — suffice?

Give me, O Zeus, just one thread to follow. My life-blood's currency shall be your own: From dawn 'til dusk to light of moon, I claim allegiance to you alone.

Tips For Writing Your Own (Poems About Questions and Answers)

1. embrace the inquisitive nature of poetry.

Poems about questions and answers are all about playing with the concept of curiosity. Remember that poetry is a fantastic avenue for exploring the what ifs , so let your imagination run wild! Don't be afraid to dive deep into your own musings or take inspiration from the questions that have been tickling your brain lately.

  • Pro tip: Start by making a list of questions that strike a chord with you, then select one or two as your poetic foundation.

2. Establish a Strong Rhythm and Rhyme Scheme

One way to make your poem resonate with readers is by working on its rhythm and rhyme—which, like any good tango, will be key in making it memorable. Whether you choose a traditional pattern like iambic pentameter or employ more modern free verse styles, getting the right flow will help set the stage for some amazing poetry.

Say it out loud: Reciting your poem can help you identify any weak spots in its rhythm.

3. Use Striking Imagery and Metaphors to Illuminate Your Message

What's a poem without vivid imagery? The beauty of poetry lies in its ability to paint pictures with words, so don't skimp on those descriptive details! Metaphors are great tools for conveying complex ideas related to your question-and-answer theme while adding depth and personality to your piece.

  • Trendy tip: Try experimenting with synesthesia—a technique where senses blend together—to create unconventional yet striking images.

4. Make Your Questions Sound Personal Yet Universal

Some of the most thought-provoking poems about questions and answers strike a balance between the personal and the universal. This enables readers to relate to your subject matter on multiple levels, which is essential for creating a powerful reading experience. So go ahead and infuse your poem with your own experiences—but don't forget to connect it to larger human emotions.

Check yourself: Can you see yourself in your poem? Can others see themselves in it too?

5. Add Layers of Meaning through Structure

You've nailed down the content—now it's time to focus on structure. Consider how you can use line breaks, stanzas, or other organizing elements to guide your reader through a journey of questions and answers. This can help shape their understanding of your poem while also revealing hidden meanings behind each query.

  • Smarty pants move: Experiment with mirror or reverse structures that reflect the themes of questioning and answering.

6. Don't Shy Away from Using Humor (Where Appropriate)

Although poetry is often viewed as deep, introspective expression, there's no rule against cracking a smile! Finding humor within life's questions and answers can help you create engaging, relatable poetry that delights readers while still delivering thought-provoking messages.

Funny bone alert: Add some playful wordplay or witty puns throughout your poem as subtle nods toward humor.

7. Close with an Impactful Resolution

Finally, end strong by delivering a resolution that ties together the question-and-answer threads woven throughout your poem. Whether it be a punchy call-to-action or an ambiguous cliffhanger leaving readers pondering long after they're done reading—make sure it leaves a lasting impression!

  • Last word wisdom: Resist the urge to spoon-feed your conclusion. Instead, let your audience interpret the answers for themselves.

By following these seven tips, you're well on your way to crafting amazing poems about questions and answers. Remember: it's all about balance, imagination, and connecting with readers through shared human experiences. Happy writing!

Generate Your Own 100% Unique Poetry

If you enjoyed those, try out our AI Poem Generator Tool now! Everything you generate is yours to use however you like! If you want to self-publish your own poetry book, you are 100% free to do so 🙂 Enjoy! 😉

Related posts:

  • Poems About A Beautiful Life: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry
  • Poems About Kafka: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry (Shakespeare, Maya Angelou, Sappho-Inspired)
  • Poems About Valerie Worth: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry (Shakespeare, Maya Angelou, Sappho-Inspired)
  • Poems About Book Characters: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

Similar Posts

Poems About Bookmarks: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

Poems About Bookmarks: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

You’ve asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative poems about bookmarks in the styles…

Poems About Healing From Sickness: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

You’ve asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative poems about healing from sickness in…

Poems About Justice And Truth: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

You’ve asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative poems about justice and truth in…

Short Poems About Unrequited Love: Maya Angelou, Shakespeare, Sylvia Plath-Inspired FREE Poetry

You’ve asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative short poems about unrequited love in…

Poems About Sadness And Loneliness: Maya Angelou, Shakespeare, Sylvia Plath-Inspired FREE Poetry

You’ve asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative poems about sadness and loneliness in…

Poems About Cars And Love: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

You’ve asked, and Tap Poet has delivered! Bringing you unique and creative poems about cars and love in…

Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.



Editorial »

The poetry quiz, are you a poetry master dare to take the ultimate poetry challenge don't be so shy — our fun poetry quiz presents questions and answers on old and modern poetry to help test and enrich your knowledge., share your thoughts about our poetry quiz with the community:, 126 comments.


Report Comment

We're doing our best to make sure our content is useful, accurate and safe. If by any chance you spot an inappropriate comment while navigating through our website please use this form to let us know, and we'll take care of it shortly.

You need to be logged in to favorite .

Create a new account.

Your name: * Required

Your email address: * Required

Pick a user name: * Required

Username: * Required

Password: * Required

Forgot your password?    Retrieve it

We need you!

Help us build the largest poetry quiz on earth.,   congratulations, the web's largest resource for, poets, poems & poetry, a member of the stands4 network, which quiz would you take next, pick from below.

  • A.  The Acronym Quiz
  • B.  The Lyrics Quiz
  • C.  The Words Quiz
  • D.  The Quotes Quiz
  • E.  The Synonyms Quiz
  • F.  The Phrases Quiz

November 2023

Poetry contest.

Enter here »

poem writing questions

Our awesome collection of

Promoted poems.

poem writing questions

Get promoted 


Boston College Library Logo

Boston College Libraries

photo of a dozen questions and answers on the answer wall.

The Answer Wall

Answering questions at Boston College O’Neill Library

Please write a poem on a healthy romantic relationship?

Please write a poem on a healthy romantic relationship?

I am not a poet, however many others who are have written poems you might like. Take a look at Seamus Heaney’s “Scaffolding,” Joy Harjo’s “For Keeps,” and Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s “How Do I Love Thee?” And maybe, if none of these are quite what you want, you could write the poem you’re hoping for.


  1. Poetry Comprehension for Upper Elementary

    poem writing questions

  2. The Poem Questions & Answers

    poem writing questions

  3. Rhythm In Poetry Worksheets

    poem writing questions

  4. Writing Question Prompts for Writers of All Ages

    poem writing questions

  5. Poetry Question Chart

    poem writing questions

  6. Poetry Questions by The Parent's Teacher

    poem writing questions


  1. 101 Poetry Prompts & Ideas for Writing Poems

    1.The Untouchable: Something that will always be out of reach 2. 7 Days, 7 Lines: Write a poem where each line/sentence is about each day of last week 3. Grandma's Kitchen: Focus on a single memory, or describe what you might imagine the typical grandmother's kitchen to be like 4. Taste the Rainbow: What does your favorite color taste like? 5.

  2. 100 Poetry Prompts

    100 Poetry Prompts Write a poem about colors without ever naming any colors in the poem. Write a poem that tells a story. Use the following words in a poem: under, thrust, harbor, wind, prance, fall. Write a poem about the following image: an empty stadium with litter strewn about and one sneaker on the stadium stairs. Write three haiku.

  3. 33 Sensational Poem Topics & Poetry Writing Prompts

    What has your experience with poetry been like? Choose a poem that you like and analyze how the poet uses language in the poem to express emotions and ideas. Write a poem about your daily routine. Write a poem about what it's like to be _____ years old. Write a poem about an issue that you and your friends struggle with.

  4. 22 Poetry Prompts to Help You Write Your Next Great Poem

    1. Choose one of your five senses. Write a poem that focuses on your chosen sense. 2. Write a poem inspired by a color. 3. Write a poem based on something that happened to you this week. It could be something life-changing or something seemingly ordinary. Tune into that moment and paint a story about it.

  5. How to Write a Poem: A Step-by-Step Guide

    Lindsay Kramer Updated on January 6, 2022 Writing Tips Poetry is . . . song lyrics without the music? Writing that rhymes? A bunch of comparisons and abstract imagery that feels like a code for the reader to decipher? The answer to all of the above is yes, but poetry encompasses much more.

  6. Browse Learning Prompts

    The Self-Destructing Poem. By Maggie Queeney July 18, 2023. Sandra Cisneros, when speaking about her poetry-writing practice during a long pause between published collections, describes the liberation in writing for the self: "Poems were to be written as if... Learning Prompt.

  7. 1,900+ Writing Prompts and Ideas from Poets & Writers

    Find details about every creative writing competition—including poetry contests, short story competitions, essay contests, awards for novels, grants for translators, and more—that we've published in the Grants & Awards section of Poets & Writers Magazine during the past year. We carefully review the practices and policies of each contest before including it in the Writing Contests ...

  8. How to Write a Poem, Step-by-Step

    Poetry is Language at its Richest and Most Condensed. Unlike longer prose writing (such as a short story, memoir, or novel), poetry needs to impact the reader in the richest and most condensed way possible. Here's a famous quote that enforces that distinction: "Prose: words in their best order; poetry: the best words in the best order."

  9. Writing about Poetry: Questions and Answers

    Question 1: So what is a poetry paper, and how is it different from summary papers or compare-and-contrast essays? Answer: A poetry paper is actually called an explication, or a close reading of a poem. It is a line-by-line commentary about what is happening there.

  10. How to Write Poetry: 11 Rules for Poetry Writing Beginners

    A simple rhyming poem can be a non-intimidating entryway to poetry writing. Don't mistake quantity for quality; a pristine seven-line free verse poem is more impressive than a sloppy, rambling epic of blank verse iambic pentameter, even though it probably took far less time to compose. 4. Don't obsess over your first line.

  11. How to Write a Poem: Get Tips from a Published Poet

    1. Brainstorm your starting point 2. Free-write in prose first 3. Choose your poem's form and style 4. Read for inspiration 5. Write for an audience of one — you 6. Read your poem out loud 7. Take a break to refresh your mind 8. Have fun revising your poem Why should novelists and short story writers try their hand at poetry? Click to tweet! 1.

  12. 7 Poetry Writing Prompts Your Students Will Actually Enjoy

    Looking for some poetry writing prompts to try out with your students? Here are seven ideas to get you started! 1. Object Poem (with a Tiny Twist) Have your student look around the room or go outside and create a list of five very small objects that they see, such as a piece of lint, button, ant, or wad of gum.

  13. 2023 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 21

    For the 2023 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, poets are tasked with writing a poem a day in the month of November before assembling a chapbook manuscript in the month of December. Day 21 is the third Two-for-Tuesday prompt. Robert Lee Brewer. Nov 21, 2023. And just like that we're finishing the third week of this challenge.

  14. 2023 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 22

    Write a poem every single day of the year with Robert Lee Brewer's Poem-a-Day: 365 Poetry Writing Prompts for a Year of Poeming. After sharing more than a thousand prompts and prompting thousands of poems for more than a decade, Brewer picked 365 of his favorite poetry prompts here. Click to continue. ***** Here's my attempt at a Setting Poem:

  15. Poetry Questions and Answers

    Compare and contrast two poems: "I Hear America Singing" by Walt Whitman and "I, Too" by Langston Hughes.

  16. 2023 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 24

    For the 2023 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, poets are tasked with writing a poem a day in the month of November before assembling a chapbook manuscript in the month of December. Day 24 is to write a Home Blank poem. Robert Lee Brewer. 26 seconds ago. For today's prompt, take the phrase "Home (blank)," replace the blank with a new word or ...

  17. 36 Questions to Ask About Poetry

    36 Questions you can ask about any poem: What is the title of the poem, and does it have any special significance? Who is the speaker of the poem? Is the speaker male or female, old or young, etc.? What is the subject of the poem? What is the poet talking about? Where does the poem take place?

  18. Browse Printable Poetry Worksheets

    With activities suited to all ages and levels, these poetry worksheets are a great way to get your students excited for creative writing. Beginners will love completing acrostic and fill-in-the-blank poems, while more advanced students learn about rhyme, meter, figurative language, more complex structures, and even famous poets from history!

  19. 2023 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 25

    Write a poem every single day of the year with Robert Lee Brewer's Poem-a-Day: 365 Poetry Writing Prompts for a Year of Poeming. After sharing more than a thousand prompts and prompting thousands of poems for more than a decade, Brewer picked 365 of his favorite poetry prompts here. Click to continue. ***** Here's my attempt at a Response ...

  20. Understanding Poetry: 5 Questions to Ask

    What do you see, taste, smell, hear, and feel? Then figure out what those images have in common. For instance, in Langston Hughes' "Mother to Son" the imagery centers around a broken down staircase and reflects personal brokenness and hardship. What is the mood of the poem? (Or How does it make me feel?)

  21. How to Write a Poetry Essay (Complete Guide)

    How much time do you have to complete the essay? Do you have access to books or the internet? These questions matter because they will determine the type, length, and scope of the essay you write. Naturally, an essay written under timed conditions about an unfamiliar poem will look very different from one written about a poem known to you.

  22. 62 Questions to Ask a Poet

    62 Questions you can ask a poet to get inside their head and learn more about their process: What inspired you to start writing poetry? Who are some of your favorite poets? Why do you like their work? Do you think the poem should be read aloud or experienced silently on the page?

  23. How to Write a Poem

    The form is the actual writing part of the poem, and this is juxtaposed against the content, which is what the poem is about. Think of it like the form being the physical thing and the content is what is evoked in your head. This is important to understand when writing poetry for beginners. There are many different ways in which you can ...

  24. 23+ Epic Poems About Questions: Asking And Seeking

    23+ Epic Poems About Questions: Asking And Seeking There are endless possibilities for what you can write about when it comes to poetry. You can explore your feelings, reflect on the world around you, or even capture a moment in time. But one topic that's especially intriguing questions. What do they mean to us?

  25. Ten Questions

    Find details about every creative writing competition—including poetry contests, short story competitions, essay contests, awards for novels, grants for translators, and more—that we've published in the Grants & Awards section of Poets & Writers Magazine during the past year. We carefully review the practices and policies of each contest before including it in the Writing Contests ...

  26. Poems About Questions And Answers: Unique 100% Royalty-Free Poetry

    Tips For Writing Your Own (Poems About Questions and Answers) 1. Embrace the Inquisitive Nature of Poetry. Poems about questions and answers are all about playing with the concept of curiosity. Remember that poetry is a fantastic avenue for exploring the what ifs, so let your imagination run wild! Don't be afraid to dive deep into your own ...

  27. The Poetry Quiz

    Dare to take the ultimate poetry challenge? Don't be so shy — Our Fun Poetry Quiz presents questions and answers on old and modern poetry to help test and enrich your knowledge. Sound: Time: 00:00 Question 1 / 10 Score: 0 of 0 Choose the answer that best matches the question below: Initializing... A. B. C. D. Help me out... Next Restart

  28. Please write a poem on a healthy romantic relationship?

    The Answer Wall Story. Hi. I'm the Answer Wall. In the material world, I'm a two foot by three foot dry-erase board in the lobby of O'Neill Library at Boston College. In the online world, I live in this blog. You might say I have multiple manifestations. Like Apollo or Saraswati or Serapis. Or, if you aren't into deities of knowledge ...