Prompts to the left of me, challenges to the right! Here I am, writing and reading with you…

Sorry Bob Dylan. I stole from Stealer’s Wheel. Here, I’ll make it all better by pulling in the original:

Speaking of stealing, I’ve heard that Kerouac’s On The Road is one of the most shoplifted books of all time. I’ve never stolen it. I was given a copy by a crazy old coot who used to stand in the hotsprings in Alaska where I worked at the time and bellow operatic bits of song so that they resounded from the surrounding mountains.


I’ve got two writing prompts on my mind at the moment. One is from Jeff Goins, host of the My 500 Words challenge. He has encouraged me to write about writing. The other prompt is from The Mischief Cafe on the poetry community site tweetspeak:

Try It: Wish poetry

Think of a time when you made a wish. Did you blow out candles on a birthday cake, drop a coin into a well, or wish upon a star? Were you a child or all grown up? Try to remember the moment and recreate it with poetry.

So I was thinking about these two prompts in conjunction when I came up with this little Acrostic Poem.

I bring carefully into existence
Some personal sense of what is or could be
Hoping my words will find purchase in others’ minds.


Acrostics are good fun. When you undertake to write an Acrostic Poem, you immediately forego any possibility of it turning out to be recognized as a work of genius. Because really… so gimmicky, right? I mean, we don’t hold up any Acrostic Poems as great works of literature, do we? We don’t. But hey, like I say: good fun. I think I’ll write another one.

Keep on writing, Jack
Every word, I’m hanging on
Roll after roll of teletype paper
Out the window, hanging, tongue out, I’m your dog
Under your spell
Ace it again, my friend
Captain Jack


Jack’s word-smithing style… he would use the same word, any word, over and over, word by word, mixing it up, wording it differently, wild weird wordlings he would make up…

And he would do haiku.


Haiku is another one of those forms, you know? Where no matter how good it is, it’s… I hope you don’t hate me for saying this… No matter how good it is, it’s just a haiku. Oh I’m going to Writer Hell for saying that out loud, I just know it. Damn. I actually have another blog where I keep my haiku stash, so as not to water down my glorious Word Florilegium here with too many five seven fives. Maybe it’s just me. I’ve got this whole B.A. in Literature background you know. Probably I’m just a snob. Don’t let me be a bad influence!

Writing and wishing and wishing and writing, I’ve still got those two prompts in my head. “I wish I could write.” That’s the simplest combination maybe. Or just “I write a wish.” But to really work, isn’t a wish supposed to remain unspoken? Perhaps if you’re going to write your wishes, it’s best if you then burn them before they’re read.

That reminds me of something. Everything reminds me of something.

I had some college mates down to the fall-down cabin my Pop used to own, before it burned down, on a high hill overlooking the Wabash River where Indiana borders Illinois. And one of those mates, a curious fellow name of Scott Jessie, he sat in the cabin all evening beside the open hearth, making little godseyes out of matchsticks and thread, and throwing them into the fire…

Maybe he was making wishes. Maybe that’s what writing is.