“Poetry Games” for Extra Credit

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You may receive up to 20 points of extra credit by writing a poem inspired by one of the following ten “poetry games.” You can only do one of these — maximum 20 points extra credit. Your “poetry game poem” can be turned in at any point this semester.

  1. Make a list of random words. Then write a poem that includes all the words.
  2. A child about to be born has requested a briefing on what to expect. What do you tell him or her?
  3. Write your obituary in the voice of someone who loved you. Then write another obituary in the voice of someone who didn’t love you.
  4. Write a poem in which most of the vocabulary comes from a specific field: mathematics, cooking, football, religion, car repair, etc. The poem could be an apology to a girlfriend or boyfriend using words from theatre, for example.
  5. Write a first-person poem from the viewpoint of a wild animal finding a half-eaten hamburger. Or an animal about to cross a highway.
  6. Write a first-person poem from the perspective of a fork, knife, or spoon. What does the utensil think of the person using it?
  7. Write a poem about getting into a physical fight. Describe the action in detail with a sense of slow motion. What does it feel like to get hit?
  8. Write a first-person poem in which you imagine that you possess X-ray vision. You can see inside everything before your eyes. What would your life be like? Would you enjoy it?
  9. Pick out one of your favorite poems, and pretend that it is a letter from a close friend, even though it may sound like a mysterious letter. Write a poem in response to what your friend has written.
  10. Create brand new, absolutely original similes for the following expressions. Here is an example: As nervous as a downed power line.

As blue as _________________

As rough as _______________

As stiff as __________________

As eager as ________________

Crying like ________________

As tall as ________________

Shaking like ________________

Once you have completed your similes, pick the one that you like best, and use it in the first line of a 12-line poem.



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