Prompt 12, Hour 12

This prompt has steps, and you have to do them in order. Don’t look ahead to the next step before completing the previous one.

1. Grab a book off a shelf at random.

2. Read the first line of the book and the last line of the book.

3. Pick one of them.

4. You have to use every single word in this line in a poem. Those words can be used at any point in the poem.



Prompt 11, Hour 11

Write a poem about or set in a place you have never been to. It could be a real concrete location, or something more metaphorical, imaginary or fictional – somewhere over the rainbow comes to mind.

Prompt 9, Hour 9

Write a poem containing at least five of the following ten words. If you want it can include all ten words. If this prompt seems at all familiar, it is probably because we do it every year, just with different words.











Prompt 8, Hour 8

Emoji Poetry – prompt contributed by Jennifer Faylor

Look at these emoji versions of poems and write a poem by translating one of them back into verse. You can deviate from translating at any point if a poem takes off in a different direction, or write about the concept of or your experience with emojis instead. For additional inspiration check out one of Stephanie Berger and Carina Finn’s emoji poems here.

Prompt 7, Hour 7

Write a poem titled Season of the (fill in the blank).

The fill in the blank could be a reference, it could be an actual season, it could be something abstract, or concrete, anything you want.

The key is to write a poem that matches, or interacts with that title.

Prompt 6, Hour 6

Write about your ideal day using only imagery and sensory details. It is fine if it is fragmentary.

Hour 4, Prompt 4

Write an epistolary poem that is a letter from you to someone who has passed and/or someone you have not seen in a long time.

Hour 3, Prompt 3

The Bop is one of my favorite poetry forms. It’s something I discovered last year during the poetry marathon, although I’m going to warn you, it’s on the longer side.

This is the only formal poetry prompt that is part of the Marathon. We always do one per year.

The Bop was developed by Afaa Michael Weaver at a Cave Canem summer retreat a number of years ago.

There are three stanzas. Each stanza is followed by a refrain (so the same statement is repeated three times).

The first stanza is 6 lines long and presents a problem. The second stanza is eight lines long, and can explore or expand the problem. The third stanza is 6 lines long, and can either present a solution or document a failed attempt to resolve the issue.