The day we’ve all been waiting for is nearly here — April 1, and the official start to Na/GloPoWriMo 2022.

That said, April 1 starts a bit earlier for some of you than it does here on the east coast of the United States, what with that whole earth-spinning-on-its-axis and international-date-line thing.

For those of you who want to get a jump on things (either because it’s already April 1 where you are or, who knows, maybe you’re just a glutton for poetry!), we’ve got a special early-bird prompt, based on the poetry of Emily Dickinson.

Dickinson is known for her elliptical style, unusual word choices, and mordant sense of humor. Over the past year, I’ve experimented with writing poems based on, or responding to, various lines from her poems. Today, I’d like to challenge you to do the same! Here are a few lines of Dickinson’s that might appeal to you (the slashes indicate line breaks):

  • “Forever might be short”
  • “The absence of the Witch does not / Invalidate the spell”
  • “If to be ‘Elder’ – mean most pain – / I’m old enough, today”
  • “The second half of joy / Is shorter than the first”
  • “To be a Flower, is profound / Responsibility –

And if none of those inspire you, you can find many of her poems here.

For those of you getting a jump-start on April, happy writing! As for the rest of you, I’ll see you back here tomorrow with our first “official” prompt, featured participant and featured online magazine.

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