Hello, everyone, and welcome back for what I hope will be a lucky thirteenth day of NaPoWriMo.

Our featured participant today is Somewhere In-Between, where the poem for Day 13 takes us deep inside the vocabulary of cars. I have to admit, whenever anyone points out a particularly interesting car to me, my reaction is “Oh, yes, I see that one seems to have wheels, and um, yes, it drives on roads.” But as this poem shows, even though cars aren’t my thing, other people’s enthusiasm for them is genuine, and has a language of its own.

And today’s featured poetry resource is an “oldie but a goodie” – Poetry Daily. The site features a new poem each day, largely drawn from newly published books and issues of journals. It’s a great way to find new poems and poets and books!

And now for our prompt (as always, it’s optional!). In keeping with the mysterious quality of the number 13, today I challenge you to write a riddle poem. This poem should describe something without ever naming it. Perhaps each line could be a different metaphor for the same object? Maybe the title of the poem can be the “answer” to the riddle. The result could be a bit like our Day One poems of negation, but the lines don’t need to be expressed in negatives. To get you thinking, here’s one of my favorite examples of a “riddle” poem – Sylvia Plath’s “Metaphors”:

I’m a riddle in nine syllables,
An elephant, a ponderous house,
A melon strolling on two tendrils.
O red fruit, ivory, fine timbers!
This loaf’s big with its yeasty rising.
Money’s new-minted in this fat purse.
I’m a means, a stage, a cow in calf.
I’ve eaten a bag of green apples,
Boarded the train there’s no getting off.

Happy writing!


45 Responses to Day Thirteen

  1. […] Today’s prompt: a riddle poem. Is it just me or is it getting more complicated each day? Because I’m bad at riddles, I wrote a riddle haiku. The answer follows at the end of this page, so try not to look. […]

  2. […] (H/T; also Writing 101, day six) […]

  3. Van Waffle says:

    This is one of my favourite forms of poetry to write. I hope today’s offering, The story stick, will appeal to a few other writers.

  4. Van Waffle says:

    Sorry, that linked back to this page. Here is The story stick.

  5. Van Waffle says:

    Ack, I’m having trouble with that link. One more time: The story stick.

  6. Bryan Ens says:

    I really am bad at following prompt instructions. Thank goodness they’re optional!

  7. […] one in response to NaPoWriMo 2015, optional Day 13 prompt to write a riddle […]

  8. […] NaPoWriMo challenge was to write a riddle poem. There is a message hidden in my poem above, can you find it??? Maybe […]

  9. […] Prompt: Riddle poem […]

  10. […] Poetic Asides P-A-D “Confession Poems” 30dpc “Meta Poems” NaPoWriMo’s “Riddle Poems w/ Plath” The Language Inside’s “Turning Points (in present tense) prompt” REWIND The Daily […]

  11. […] NaPoWriMo new theme, for day now thirteen, A riddling poem, and this sets the scene: […]

  12. inktuition says:

    I missed eight days while I was on holiday, so I’m planning to make for it during the rest of NaPoWriMo 2015. My poem today, rather than following the prompt, is about the thirteenth and how many times a relationship really takes to break http://inktuition.net/2015/04/13/unlucky-thirteenth/

  13. Colonialist says:

    This was really fun. I enjoyed it. Whether or not readers will is another matter …

  14. […] NaPoWriMo–Day 13–Metaphor poem […]

  15. I loved this prompt–it brought back a memory that allowed me to create my first Metaphor poem–“The Reader” http://leonaslines.com/2015/04/13/the-reader/

  16. Jim says:

    I like the idea of your riddles. I am about off to try one of my friends who posts here, her riddle. Some days I’m good at riddles, others, well …

  17. “Oh, yes, I see that one seems to have wheels, and um, yes, it drives on roads.” Hahaha! :D Well, this is my response to the wonderful prompt. Good luck for Day Thirteen! :)
    “To Fix Broken Strings”

  18. […] I was stumped since, for the most part, I am completely open about my life experiences. Over at the NaPoWriMo blog, we were asked to write a riddle poem. Again, I had no idea where to take that thought. I find my […]

  19. Today, K was about kittens (for the daily haiku) but my NaPoWriMo take was a little more serious.

    To My Old Cat, Sleeping

  20. VoR says:


    Not sure if this really fits the prompt as I wrote it before. But it kind of fits? Anyway this is my day thirteen poem: I Don’t Believe.

  21. […] spent my weekend doing… Today’s prompt for a “riddle” poem came courtesy of NaPoWriMo.net—and did you solve […]

  22. Thank you for featuring my poem! I’m honored. It makes me feel good to know that a “non-enthusiast” understands. I love cars like Shakespeare loved sonnets.

    I combined today’s riddle prompt with the Day 9 prompt since I wrote my own poem for day 9. The answer is inside!


  23. […] response to napowrimo’s day 13 challenge, to write a […]

  24. […] Day 13’s optional prompt, to write a riddle poem. ~ via The NaPoWriMo Website […]

  25. Josh says:

    I’m a day late on this, so very few of you will ever see it. Still, here it is:

    “The Poet Tells the Truth”

  26. […] Day 14’s optional prompt, to write a poem that takes the form of a dialogue. ~ via The NaPoWriMo Website […]

  27. […] first, then follow with the usual draft and commentary. (If you like, you can consider this a riddle poem from Day 13.) Number […]

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