Pic 8 Metro by night

Finding poetry: Writing Prompt in 3…2…1…




In 2010, I had the amazing opportunity to study poetry in France for a week – can you imagine? In the tiny Village of Auvillar, France - in the southwestern region of the country, all sun-soaked and sunflowers – I spent a whole week drinking wine, eating ridiculous food (some of which the other students and I made ourselves with ingredients fresh from the local Farmer’s Market) and writing, studying and obsessing over poetry with our gifted guide,  Marilyn Kallet.

Le Petit Palais is a family-owned restaurant in the heart of Auvillar. Divine.

Le Petit Palais is a family-owned restaurant in the heart of Auvillar. Divine.


As your writing prompt, take a look at the Metro picture above (taken in Paris during that same trip – that gloaming sky was stunning) and imagine you are descending those stairs into the Metro: where are you (or your character) going? Why? What do you hope happens at the other end of that ride?

Shape a poem from that subway ride or around something you find while waiting for it: a discarded love letter, a lost toy, a broken pair of eye glasses. What do you see, and what happens?

I’d love to read where this prompt takes you: if you’d like, email it to me at tomilwiley@gmail.com.

Write on!


For more information on the opportunity to study with Marilyn Kallet via the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, visit http://www.vcca.com/main/vcca-international/vcca-le-moulin-nef/programs/workshops. The next trip is May 12-19, and there’s still time for early bird discounts. You may also contact Marilyn on Twitter @mkallet or visit her web page at http://www.marilynkallet.com/