Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 156

Hey guys, I’ve started reading Haruki Murakami’s Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage. The title’s quite a mouthful. The last book of his I read was IQ84 and that one’s quite phenomenal. I remember there were two moons in the story. His stories are¬†pretty surreal. But if you, like me, question reality, then you might just develop a taste for the surreal. Souls are surreal, aren’t they? However you frame reality, that’s your reality. Anyway this¬†last novel from Murakami struck me as pretty dull–well I guess it’s the protagonist’s perspective. Aaargh. Write a poem that gives us the perspective of a protagonist. Hope yours will be sunnier.


Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 155

We spent our nights dreaming. Do you remember your dreams? In my dreams of late, I seemed to be making a series of entrances and exits. In a recent dream, I was exiting into water and then shooting up as if in a dive to break surface. The water was crystal blue as in a swimming pool. I remember feeling surprised that I was in water. If dreams are stories, who is telling them? Who is directing? Isn’t that a mysterious process, dreaming? Write about a dream/dreaming.

Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 154

Heidi-ho! This piece of blues music was from 1958. Do you remember it? Guessing lots of you are old enough, yes, no? Haha. Do you listen to vintage music? Are you into vintage stuff? Are you yourself vintage? Haha. Remember “The House of the Rising Sun”? Another piece of vintage music. The other day, on Mother’s Day, the golden oldies channel on radio was playing “M.O.T.H.E.R.”. An acronym–I googled it. I’ve never even heard it. It’s that old. 1916..oh wow. Anyway you get the idea. Write about a vintage song or vintage anything, even vintage you!

Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 153

Hope things have been pretty placid for you. If you have passed through a storm you’d know what placid means. There’s the noise of children playing just outside my window. White noise. I had just heard news that someone’s dog, a 9 year old German Shepherd, had died. Was fine yesterday. Laid down in its usual spot. But this morning died. Perhaps a heart attack. It drove its owner, apocalypse-like, to tears. For someone like me, nothing unusual like that happened today. I don’t have a dog. Not now. But I know that when mine died, no other dog will take its place. I guess life is personal like that. Some woman drove her car to a ditch. A man, a stranger, came to help her out. They became lovers. You know, things happen and it’s all personal. Everyone’s life is different. Now that I’d led you on, on some kind of mind trip maybe, write about whatever personal thing that was for you. Think back.

Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 152


Annie Leibovitz’s portraits let you breathe into the real woman. I don’t know much about photography but am more interested in how a portrait should convey a person and her context. So her posture, how she dresses, what kind of setting–that kind of conveys her personality. It’s fascinating to watch how she chooses to frame each one of her subject. Like this one showing Elizabeth Taylor. Yet the most memorable photo exhibit is of a naked John Lennon locked in embrace with Yoko Ono, taken just five hours before he was assassinated. Which only goes to show how important a photograph can be. We are all ephemera. Write about a photograph/ a portrait.

Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 151


Henri Edmond Cross, Bathers III

The weather was kind yesterday. It was kind of balmy. The best day to take to the sea. I know I’m only imagining. But sometimes imagining is good enough. It really is. Try to imagine pleasant scenery and you’ll feel kind of blissful. Try it in your poem.

Here’s mine.

She wanted to purge the artificial air,
feeling quite ill-disposed. After all,
she’s paid an arm and a leg.

So onward to the sea. Ritualised
therapy, she tore off her clothes, into
a bathing suit. Tessa, look,
a bowl of purple sea!

We floated into the champagne sky.
Something picturesque had grazed
our skins, skimming, indolent,
and blissful now.

So does it work or not? Is it therapy or not?

Prompts for RWJ, Prompt 150

So I didn’t mean to write about birth. But there it is. Birth is pretty amazing. In fact I rate it as the.most.amazing.thing. Unless you’ve experienced it personally for yourself you don’t know how amazing. And I also got thinking about holes. They are, in fact, portals. Holey=holy in my book. Anyway, we’re full of holes, aren’t we? (Metaphorically too. :)) I don’t have to specify, right? Eyes, nose, ears, mouth and the ass and then the vagina. That has got to be the most amazing hole. It is where a human being is minted. So I guess, the prompt is to write about holes/holiness. You can be mystical about it. Oh, please do. What can you say about a baby falling out of you?

The referent for my poem is of course, Li-Young Lee’s poem, “One Heart”.

Look at the birds. Even flying
is born

out of nothing. The first sky
is inside you, friend, open

at either end of day.
The work of wings

was always freedom, fastening
one heart to every falling thing.

~ Li-Young Lee ~