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Voices for the Planet: Two Poetry Prompts

We invited our poetry expert, Gail Ingram, to contribute a couple of prompts for aspiring poets.

Gail is an acclaimed poet and sought -after poetry editor. If you enter a poem for Write On Speak Out: Voices for the Planet, you may be lucky enough to have Gail as your mentor!

Poetry for the Planet Prompt #1

Write a poem about a particular time (or times) where you failed the environment either in a small or a large way.

Did you fail to recycle the pizza box?

Did you kill a mother spider?

Did you beg Mum to drive you instead of taking the bus? What did you do specifically?

Where were you? What was your reaction and/or the reaction of others at that time? Did they care or not? What will the consequences be of your action? Will the bus driver lose his job through lack of customers? Will petrol price rise? Include lots of specific and surprising details.

Try and reach some insight about your experience by the end of the poem: Will you repeat this failure or not? Why (not)?

Challenge: Include some humour.

See Gail's tips here: POETRY TIPS 1

Poetry for the Planet Prompt #2

Write a poem where you closely observe a small part of our planet that has been impacted by climate change.

It could be a diseased patch of your garden, a depleted rock pool, a new building site draining the swamp, the restricted roots of the apple tree where you eat your lunch.

Choose a place you know well.

Describe this ecosystem with as much detail as you can: colours, textures, temperature, weather, sounds, objects in the environment.

What is impacting this ecosystem?

You may compare this place/this ecosystem to a healthier time before, or a time ten, twenty or fifty years from now.

Challenge: Use repetition of words or phrases in a musical way.

See more of Gail's Poetry tips here: POETRY TIPS 2


Write a first draft of your poem and enter now.

Entries until July 29th or until all places are full.

(c) Write On School for Young Writers


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