Today’s prompt comes to us from Juan Martinez. It asks you to think about a small habit you picked up from one of your parents, and then to write a piece that explores an early memory of your parent engaged in that habit, before shifting into writing about yourself engaging in the same habit.
Mother, turn the television up that is how high it can go? I hear the scratch of the nail on the callused skin, not scratching for purpose just a simple response to sitting legs to the side, crossed ankles paying attention to the movement of the toe against the sole except forty years later watching television, turn the volume down what is that scratching? My foot does not need it but my nail finds skin with a small callus to make a scratching noise like a memory
*****For any participants that do NOT like restrictions, please feel free to participate in any way you would like. It is great to read the contributions!****
Set up a timer or sit near a clock so you can keep track of the six minutes you will be writing.
You can either use one of the prompts (photo or written) or you can free-write.
Get ready and write for 6 minutes, that is it! Can you write a complete story? Can you think of a new Sonnet? Can you write 400 words? 400? 500? There are no restrictions on what kind of writing you do, but you should try to be actively writing for six minutes.
After you are done writing, include your word count and then post back to this page #Simply6Minutes or include your link in the comments section. Pingbacks are enabled.
*Feel free to leave your work completely unedited. I believe it is good to see, especially for new writers, that even very seasoned writers don’t write a perfect first draft.*
Have fun, challenge yourself if you’d like, read and respond to others’ posts.
There was the day we met again my heart was soaring like the wind thinking we were together that day was more than anything for which I’d pray to know you did it just to see if you could hurt me like I hurt thee it pains me still to know how deep you went to hurt and make me weep.
This is a twist on a prompt offered by Kay Gabriel during a meeting she facilitated at the Poetry Project last year. Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a two-part poem, in the form of an exchange of letters. The first stanza (or part) should be in the form of a letter that you write either to yourself or to a famous fictional or historical person. The second part should be the letter you receive in response.
To Me, From Me
Hello myself, I say to thee, in a letter I write to me. I’d like to say you are okay I think you ought to stay this way. You work real hard and care so much using all your time and such and so I’d like to say today that you can take a break to play play with words, play with sound Notice things that are all around Write them up, Spit them out Now that is what I’m talking about!
Hello to you, it’s me you know I think you’ve got a point to show. You care for others and your dad making him happy makes you glad. But don’t forget to care for you And one more thing before you do Think of all the people near who love you and will hold you dear.
When I was reading the link about how to write this poem I decided to start with just one stanza and work from there, without worrying where my thoughts would go in the following five stanzas. A thought came to my mind and it was about the kids I used to teach. I don’t know what led me to that but it was there.
The students I used to teach were in our clinical day school for social-emotional disturbances that were no longer manageable in the public schools. Each morning was sort of like a crap-shoot with these kids because their mood often depended on life at home. Some had nothing to eat in their homes. Some had parents that needed more help than they could ever find. We knew we had to be prepared for everything. That was our job along with teaching. I miss those days and those little ones. This poem may give you a glimpse of what it was like each day.
Starting a New Day
Good morning, glad you came again today I have left you something good to eat. I am sorry that you do not look happy Is there something you need to talk about We will help you work these things out. There is nothing to fear when you are here.
When you come and I see you here I think how lucky I am today. To see that you have come out so, enjoy what there is to eat. Later we will see what you will learn about and hopefully the list makes you happy.
I love to see you smile because you are happy I think it helps that you have come here. There is nothing here for you to worry about Every day is a new day like it is today. Nourish your brain as you enjoy something to eat We will see to it that your problems are worked out.
I want to know how your day is turning out It looks like you are very happy It always helps when we have something good to eat. Something we always offer you here. Let’s look at all you have accomplished today. We can talk of all you have learned about.
There is something I would like to ask you about It has to do with you getting out Where will you go later today? Will it be a place where you can be happy? Will you be very far or try to stay here? We can think about it while you eat.
I have tried to provide you something healthy to eat I know that we have a lot to talk about we can chat for as long as we need and sit here I hope you know that you can let your fears out I only want to help you be healthy and happy Because every day is important like today.
When you come here you may always have something to eat Whether today or another day it is you we will talk about When you get those feelings out you will feel a bit more happy.
Write a poem in the form of a “to-do list.” The fun of this prompt is to make it the “to-do list” of an unusual person or character.
The Cat makes a list
Well the Cat in the Hat was up to his tricks looking for kids to bring into the mix. He had a big list of things left to do like tidy his bag and polish his shoe. He also had things like talk to the fish, walk on a ball, balance a dish, take a long walk, Sing a new song, play a new game, the list was real long. The Cat sat to think about what to do first he decided a drink who help quench his dry thirst When all of a sudden he finally found a book and a pen to write it all down. He wrote down his list in a second or two He loved the red ink and also the blue. He jotted and scribbled until the paper was full He put on his hat and gave it a pull He went on his way to find some kids to play and decided to leave the list to some other day.
Today, I’d like to challenge you to read a few of the poems from Spoon River Anthology, and then write your own poem in the form of a monologue delivered by someone who is dead.
When I was reading the post about the anthology and then the optional prompt I thought of this family when I was a young child. The family was not very clean. Now looking back, perhaps they didn’t have the money to pay for detergents and soaps. Nearly everyone in town knew where they lived and although I am ashamed to admit this openly, we all used to hold our breath when we passed by their house on the bus. It is so mean and I am not proud of it but they came to mind. I think they may have come to mind because it is a family that is now haunting the living as revenge to all those people who were so cruel to them in life. This family is still alive as far as I know and I wish them no harm. I think if they knew, and maybe they did, then they would find some “humor” in their haunting!
Before, they were known by the odor sent forth from their windows and doors.
Now they lay together rotting into the earth emitting an odor much worse than any that came from their windows and doors.
And he who lay beside them must live in death with an odor repulsive through dirt with no windows or doors.
Together they rot in peace All sending their odor to all passersby as they did in life.