NaPoWriMo National Poetry Writing Month Day 14 Prompt for Monday April 14, 2014 Posted April 13, 2014

April 13, 2014

“Poetry is an act of peace. Peace goes into the making of a poet as flour goes into the making of bread.”
Pablo Neruda

Welcome to Day 14 of the NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month) challenge. We are almost at the half-way point of writing 30 poems in 30 days. How are you doing?

Now for today’s prompt.

Monday April 14th Prompt

PROMPT 14 – Write a Ghazal (pronounced Guzzle with a bit of an Arabic G sound).

What’s a Ghazal?

It’s an Arabic verse form popularized by European poets of the 19th century (particularly German poets) and first became popular in the U.S. in the 1960s.


All lines must have the same number of syllables. You don’t have to settle for iambic pentameter (duh-DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH-duh-DUH ) or ten syllables but that’s pretty common for this form.
It is written in couplets (two lines, space, two lines etc). There should be a minimum of 5 couplets (ten line minimum).

The first couplet rhymes

The first couplet of the Ghazal must rhyme
Pretty easy to do most of the time.

The closing words of the end of the second line are repeated in the second part of the second lines of each succeeding couplets. This is called the ’ radif ‘
(in the example above : most of the time or… of the time must be end every other line of the poem.

You don’t have to rhyme the other couplets. You can shift subjects and tones but you come back to the radif (of the time or most of the time) at the end of each couplet.

The poets signature (nickname, first name or last name) must appear somewhere in the last couplet (last two lines before the repeated radif which ends the poem.

The ghazal is an easy stylized form to learn and use because it has rules but there’s room to create a freer more wide open type of poem than most forms offer, plus you put your name/signature on it.

Now have fun writing a Ghazal!

The 13th Prompt asked you to capture a bit or two of a dead poets’ life and work it into a poem

Here’s what I did.

By Christopher J. Jarmick

Burn the ashes of all the peripherals.
Were you the sad Hamlet with a knife
clutching the voice of Daddy
too tight
as you ran from the halls of ossified discipline
and dangerous tidiness
and splattered into collages of

Let’s pretend we had insight
knew it was a bad marriage;
realized the death wish Rosenberg
obsession was a clue.
Understood the necessity of digging
deeper into madness
in long, long scream
of taboo subjects.
How far down,
do you pursue grief,
through narcissistic
sculpture gardens?

Lady Lazarus;
dying is an art. . .
some get all of the promised 9 practice feline runs
but alas
not you.
Not you.

(Several Sylvia Plath line snippets and quotes and a few that are altered slightly, make up the majority of this poem).

Copyright© Christopher J. Jarmick 2014

Keep writing!!!

Read more about National Poetry Month 2014 and NaPoWrimo in my 3 Part Series here:

The root of the word Poetry is from the Greek ποιέω (poieō), “‘I
make’”). , poiesis, meaning a “making” or ‘creation’


Poetry is Everything



One comment

  1. […] Chris Jarmick’s prompt: Day 14 of National Poetry Month, and here’s a link to Agha Shahid Ali’s “Even the Rain” – another […]

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