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2021 National Poetry Month Calendar of Prompts

April 2, 2021

2021 National Poetry Month Calendar of Prompts

(an NPM gift for you from Alice Jane-Marie Massa)

NOTE:  You may use this calendar of prompts in a variety of ways.  Each day of April includes at least three prompts from which you may choose.  If you are not enthused about the prompts for one day, you can go back and re-consider prompts which you did not use on previous days.  You may combine some prompts, change one a little, or insert one or more of your own prompts.  Let these prompts serve as a springboard for your poetry writing goals for National Poetry Month.  Most importantly, enjoy reading, sharing, and writing poetry this month!  Let’s celebrate NPM for thirty days!

* April 1, Thursday

__ Write a positive poem focusing on the solitude of writing poetry.

__ Write a poem focusing on your writing goals for this month.

__ Write a poem about winning a first-place prize you have won or would like to win.

* April 2, Friday

__ Write a poem about the duality of nature.

__ Write a poem describing twins whom you have known.

__ Write a poem which demonstrates your sense of humor.

* April 3, Saturday

__ Write a poem for children; include a duck, bunny, and/or lamb.

__ Write a poem focusing on snow-covered daffodils.

__ A triplet is a stanza of three rhyming lines.  Write a poem consisting of three triplets.

* April 4, Sunday

__ Write an acrostic based on the phrase “Easter lily.”

__ Think of your family tree; write a poem about the oldest person on your family tree.  (If you have previously written a family-tree poem or family-history poem, select the oldest person about whom you have not yet written.)

__ A quatrain is a stanza of four poetic lines.  Write a poem consisting of two quatrains or more.

* April 5, Monday

__Write a cinquain–a poem consisting of five lines whose number of syllables are 2, 4, 6, 8, 2.

__ List five of your favorite foods; then, write a poem about one or more of these foods.

__ Write a poem about five writers on your “Writing Team.”

* April 6, Tuesday

__ Write a poem about a real or metaphorical visitor at sunrise.

__ Write a poem about a raincoat and/or umbrella.

__ Write a poem about a teardrop or raindrop.

* April 7, Wednesday

__ Write a zip ode–a poem based on your current zip code or the zip code of your hometown.  The numerals of your selected zip code will determine the number of syllables for each subsequent poetic line.  If your zip code includes a zero, interpret this numeral as ten syllables.

__ Write a poem about a lost letter or lost package.

__ Write a poem about a post office.

* April 8, Thursday

__ Write a poem about dancing.

__ Write a poem about a yoga or other exercise class.

__ Write a poem about ballerina slippers, hiking boots, tap shoes, casual shoes, or other footwear.

* April 9, Friday

__ Write a poem about the sounds you hear at night.

__ Write a poem about the ninth inning of a baseball game.

__ Write a poem inspired by a note on a refrigerator.

* April 10, Saturday

__ Write a poem about your favorite or most remembered decade.

__ Write a poem about dust or dusting.

__ Write a poem about a dog.

* April 11, Sunday

__ Write a poem about several stages of your life.

__ Write a list poem in which you list at least eleven people, places, objects, ideas, etc.

__ Write a poem about a lake or other body of water.

* April 12, Monday

__ Write a poem about a favorite place where you have traveled or would like to travel.

__ Write a poem about a dozen doughnuts.

__ Write a poem about a dozen roses or dozen tulips.

* April 13, Tuesday

__ Write a poem about your luckiest day.

__ Write a poem about an elevator ride to the thirteenth floor.

__ Write a poem about a cake with thirteen candles.

* April 14, Wednesday

__ Write a sonnet.

__ Write a poem about a sneeze.

__ Write a family-history poem which focuses on a family heirloom.

* April 15, Thursday

__ Write a poem about a middle child.

__ Write a poem about a taxi ride.

__ Write a poem about a taxing situation.

* April 16, Friday

__ Write a poem set in a gazebo.

__ Write a poem about a pergola.

__ Write a poem about a bridge or bridges.

* April 17, Saturday

__ Write a poem dedicated to someone who has been most influential in your life.

__ Write a poem about a mentor or someone whom you have mentored.

__ Write a bio poem–a poem which is a short autobiographical piece.

* April 18, Sunday

__ Listen to the television program JEOPARDY!  From one or more of the categories, clues, and/or answers-in-the-form-of-a-question, write a poem.

__ Write a poem based on a favorite quotation of yours.

__ Make a list of at least five words that you consider most poetic; using one or more of these words, craft a poem.

* April 19, Monday

__ Write a poem for a monument in your hometown or in your imagination.

__ Write a poem for a plaque that will honor one of your favorite people.

__ Write a poem about your greatest accomplishment.

* April 20, Tuesday

__Write a poem about a piece of equipment or an appliance which is most needed or enjoyed.

__ Write a poem about an old standard typewriter or a rotary-dial telephone.

__ Write a poem which either begins or ends with a question.

* April 21, Wednesday

__ Write a poem about a musical instrument.

__ Write a poem about a music lesson or lessons.

__ Write a poem about a concert which you attended.

* April 22, Thursday

__ Write a poem about the “Tooth Fairy,” another fairy, or a butterfly.

__ Write a poem about losing a tooth.

__ Write a poem about wishes or a wishing well.

* April 23, Friday

__ Listen to or read your favorite news source until you find a topic for writing a poem.

__ Review a historical figure or event; then, write a poem about the person or event.

__ Write a poem about a vintage article of clothing.

* April 24, Saturday

__ Write a poem focusing on a memorable plane, train, or boat ride.

__ Write a poem about a sibling or an imaginary friend.

__ Write a poem about one of your hobbies or pastimes.

* April 25, Sunday

__ Write a poem which has a surprise ending.

__ Write a poem about a farm or farming.

__ Write a poem about an experience or an incident at a museum.

* April 26, Monday

__ Write an abecedarian–a poem of 26 lines, each of which begins with a word whose initial letter is a subsequent letter of the alphabet.

__ Write a poem set in a kitchen.

__ Write a poem about spring; use as many of the senses as possible to describe the spring scene.

* April 27, Tuesday

__ Write a poem resulting from your eavesdropping.

__ Write a poem about your neighborhood, community, or hometown.

__ Write a poem about competition.

* April 28, Wednesday

__ Write a poem about choices and/or challenges.

__ Write a poem about vegetable, herb, and/or flower gardening.

__ Write a poem set in a city park, state park, or national park.

* April 29, Thursday

__ Write a poem inspired by a book or article which you have read.

__ Write a poem that journals the changes you have experienced during the pandemic.

__ Write a poem about a homeless person.

* April 30, Friday

__ Write a poem about one tree or about trees.

__ Write a poem about poetry.

__ Write a poem about your growth as a poet during National Poetry Month.

Happy poetry writing!

Alice Massa


blog since January 19, 2013:

author’s web page:

Milwaukee, Wisconsin


From → Uncategorized

One Comment
  1. Hi Alice,

    Thanks for this list – it is wonderful.

    I won’t be writing much this month – but I will make a copy and keep it for another month when things are a little less busy.

    I am getting down to the final days of getting Songs for the Pilgrimage published. I worked the entire day yesterday going over it all for making edits.

    I gave myself an enormous task that ended up taking so much time. I put the copyright date at the end of each poem in the book. It was hard locating the exact date of writing each poem – I had to sift through a dozen journals – I never did get that all done – they are written in cursive in individual journals – so reading them was super hard and took a long time. Today, I will go over each of the meditations pieces on the Psalms and make sure the references are correct. Then there will be one more look-over and it will be published. Of course, I am getting excited about that.

    I have 3 different publications coming out this month that will feature my poems. Proverse (Hong Kong) Mingled Voices5 Anthology will have 6 of my poems and I was given “Special Honor” for a “body of work.” Pangolin Review, will publish 1 poem. And, my new book, Songs for the Pilgrimage which has over 200 pages. I have not counted the poems but I think it is nearly 90 poems, meditations from the Psalms, and historical notes. I did a voice recording for reading my poem, Preparations for a Virtual Spring Salad for the Proverse opening reception. They will have a photo of me on the screen and the audience will hear me reading the poem – it will be live and will be on YouTube as well.

    One thing I want to do next, is to develop a template for making a newsletter. I want to do one 2 times a year – in May and November. It will be a simple one that will bring some of the highlights of what is going on or what is scheduled for me – a little kind of “keep in touch” thing – nothing commercial or nothing that will clutter anyone’s mailbox with mass mailings. David D. is creating a logo for me – I’ll have that to use in my newsletter and other materials in the future such as my blog or writing letters.

    It snowed here the past 2 days – and tomorrow, we will go to my brother’s place for Easter dinner. Our granddaughter, Brandi, has covid right now. She got it from work – she works for a large dealership in the area – two of the execs there had it and they were coming to work for a week – sick. Of course, some of the people who worked there have it now, as well. But, she has been feeling like she has the flu – she is at home, of course, but recovering ok. She is 41 years old and in excellent health – I spoke with her yesterday on the phone. She is having a lot of hot flashes, but I told her that might be menopause kicking in – I was having them at this age and by 42 I was finished going through menopause, but I continued have massive hot flashes for a couple of years – and still get them at times at age 77.

    That is about it from my end, Alice. I wish you a good Easter weekend. Love, Lynda

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