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Ready for a poetry writing exercise?  Here are eleven words.  If you’d like to make something out of them, feel free to share what you’ve written in the comment box below.


It’s okay to use variations of the words in the list.  Eventually I will reveal the source of the words in a separate post.


  1. New York-Bound Train
    the wheel flashes steel
    like an anchor in the sea reaching
    out to infinity as my lungs fill with
    scratchy salt air and the morning is
    stillborn a test of my endurance against
    the just-lifted darkness like a jangle of
    piano melodies played out of key in
    the germ of the day and the tapping of
    the morning rain against the windows of
    the New York-bound train

  2. Iron Lung
    I see your infinity
    and raise you one.
    Writers is to infinity
    as scratch is to germ.
    Where do you flash to
    when all the anchors are gone?
    when even the medicine wheel
    is too concrete?
    Can you drop the piano
    from high enough?
    No, higher. This is a test
    (tap tap tap).
    What’s crazier than this, really?
    Stillbirth after stillbirth:
    we’re still trying. Clearly
    something’s wrong with us.
    I see your infinity
    and raise you too.
    Infinity is to writers
    as air is to blank?

  3. I see wheels like yours all over the city, and I like your lungs, even though germs have tapped them for infinity. Probably, you should get a test. Aw shit, scratch the test and get a piano. Music and death are okay together; still, birth is better. Anchor yourself to the flash, baby.

  4. tap
    tap tap
    on the lungs
    that catch
    like autumn
    in a bike
    scratch scratch
    infinity takes
    a test
    an anchor
    in the bright
    i: stillbirth
    no violin,
    no piano

  5. Ok better late than never. I thought you posted this list in Sept.
    Wheels of the cars
    flash the sun back.
    While the hour anchors
    to the infinity of sameness.
    Lungs take in more air
    and the mind scratches
    out a poem to save me.
    It will be stillborn.
    To test the opaque shell
    of this life. I want – not to drop.
    Will there be piano music
    in the midst of this reel? .
    Or has luck, ended the projectionist.
    Poems are the corporeal germs.
    And no taps should be played
    for their death. Mark only
    with the broken twigs crosses.
    Who will decay, receding
    into the earth, after a winter.
    I keep words in order they were posted. It more fun that way.

  6. A flash of epiphany:
    I sit on the piano, tapping keys
    Somewhere a tap is singing
    Spewing germs of wisdom
    Testing my patience but I can’t let go
    Legs are anchored by the pull
    Of lyrics unwritten and songs waiting to be sang
    Of an ode stuck in its stillbirth
    Scratching my lungs as it tries to escape
    A noise of genius and kitchen fixture combined
    Infinitely waiting
    Waiting for the drip to stop
    For the muse to pop
    For the wheel of time to release it

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