Writing Prompt: Song Lyrics

Alright, everyone, here’s a quick prompt that’s pretty self-explanatory: include a favorite song lyric in the first line of a poem.  I’m fighting with taking lines out of their original context, and I thought that an exercise like this might help. The longer the lyric you manage to incorporate, the more brownie points you get, in my book. Here’s my stab at a lyric-infused poem, pulled from Mother Mother’s “Bit By Bit”:

i’m gonna build my house in the wildest thickets

thighs ripped wide around a clump of nettle-beads

i’ll remember my trowel too late, my seeds sown

along the fence in a rivulet mountain rain began.

bees balmy wandering in the fuzzy sunlight and i

scream for feeling their grisly pinpricks splinter.

I hope this prompt is generative, and I hope that everyone has a fun time with it! Post your poems below, if you come up with something you want to share!

One Reply to “Writing Prompt: Song Lyrics”

  1. This is an exercise I did with one of my classes while I was student teaching! I think it’s really fascinating to see what you can come up with from borrowing a line from someone else, whether it be from a song or a poem. If anything, I find this technique to be useful when I’m struggling to start a poem. Also something to try (for another time!) is taking out the original lyric or line when you’ve finished and seeing what happens…I usually find that by the time I’m finished with the new poem, the line I borrowed from someone else can be changed or even removed in some way.

    Love note to “nettle beads” and “grisly pinpricks splinter” in your poem by the way. Those words will be rattling around in my head for a while now.

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