Prompting Poetry: Starting Poems
Where do we begin? We were born in the midst of a world going about its business, things half started and half done, things in the middle of happening. Actually, nothing begins any more. So you may find it fitting to open a poem in the middle of its own conversation.Here are examples of first words for a poem that don’t reveal a beginning:Not only that…And…Then again…Afterward…After [the barn door blew off in a storm]…Then…Twenty minutes (days) into the…But…But the best (worst)…There are countless other ways, of course, and you will find that starting in the middle, so to speak, changes the tone of a poem. Give it a try.
About Peggy: Peggy Miller is a poet. She has an MFA in creative writing from American University. She serves as one of the editors of the Comstock Review, a longstanding poetry journal. Peggy leads poetry workshops. Her books include What the Blood Knows and Stone Being. A new book, The Science of Silence, is forthcoming through FootHills Publishing. Peggy was a research assistant working in biochemistry for the USDA. Her poetry is often inspired by the sciences, the fascination evoked thereof,the transcendent spirit in everyday lives.