I am participating in National Poetry Writing Month, where the goal is to write one poem a day for 30 days. During the month of April, I will be using the writing prompts at ReadWritePoem.org and posting the results.
Day twenty-eight prompt (seeing red)
Today, keep track of all the things you see that are red; be creative. Red-faced is as good as a red tomato or a red sky. Use the ones that interest you most in a poem.
For Lack of a Wheelbarrow
Today, red follows me: rides
a lawn mower, cruises
a chopper, rolls
a bicycle, flicks its taillights.
Red sips from broken cups,
eats on paper plates. Plants tulip beds
with cedar chips, pinwheels
with white centers. Red
waves an American flag, hangs
Christmas lights out of season.
Red delivers the mail, directs
traffic, puts out fires, makes spaghetti.
Red calls my cell phone. It tells me
of Herr's snack food and SEPTA buses.
It says, "Watch your step." And "Thank you
for shopping." Red wears loose
shorts and a T-shirt, tucked into itself,
topped with a Phillies hat. Red
plays jump rope. Builds a brick
church and opens the doors.
Red sprays its name on a wall,
to claim it all. So much
depends upon red.
First, I generated a list of red items during my morning dog walk, into my Sony digital voice recorder. Then, on my afternoon dog walk, I dictated this poem. Since I was faced with a list of objects, I felt it was important to incorporate action into the poem. The solution soon presented itself: make the color red not only the subject, so to speak, but also the subject!
Red is everywhere when you start looking for it.