Last year I read about NaPoWriMo—National Poetry Writing Month. I don't know whose brainchild this is, but the idea is that each day in April, National Poetry Month, you are to write a new poem. Voluntary, of course, but once you take the pledge, you're making a commitment to yourself. I can only make a partial pledge. I know myself too well to think I can write 30 drafts in a month. But I am determined to increase my output. So far I'm doing okay with two drafts underway.
One reason why I can't make the full commitment is that once I get a draft going, I become kind of obsessive about it if it has some promise. I'm more inclined to dwell on it, revising and revising, than I am to move onto the next new draft. At a certain point in the revising, I find that it's a good idea for me to put the poem aside and not look at it for a while. Then when I go back to it, I find some goofs I'd missed or a new image suggests itself, a better word, a stronger music.
The other reason I can't fully commit is that starting tomorrow and for the rest of the week I will be doing a third grade residency. Four one-hour classes for each of five days, plus a professional development workshop after school. Fun but exhausting. I expect to return home each day close to comatose. Then I also have two days of workshops in a girls' high school and two evening readings.
I know, I know—excuses, excuses. But honestly, I'm going to aim for ten new drafts this month. That's still pretty good if I can do it. If you care to join in on this project and if you find the occasional prompt helpful and stimulating, I can suggest a few good online sources.
Offers numerous prompts for this month, but also on a weekly basis throughout the year. Check the March 27th entry for a list of invented forms. One of my new ones is a Pleiades. (Warning: If you look at the example by the guy who invented this form, you'll see that he's violated the seven syllables per line rule. Or did someone change the inventor's rules?)
2. Poets Online
Run by Ken Ronkowitz who offers a new prompt each month. All poems and prompts are archived. Ken's been doing this for years now, so there are lots of prompts available.
3. Poetic Asides
Robert Lee Brewer's blog. Robert is writing one new poem per day, plus taking on the addtional challenge of offering a prompt per day.