Body of Words

Why do people get tattoos? Do they get words permanently etched into their bodies to represent their life’s experiences, or experiences they would like to have? Maybe you have one/more than one and could incorporate it/them into this prompt.

Prompt: What words would make up which body parts/organs/bones if you were made of ink? You might consider what words you would want to display proudly, and which ones you would want to cover up. Would there be any words that would demand attention over others?

So maybe you want to jot down a personal response to this writing exercise in your journal or wherever you keep your other words. Maybe you’ll then be able to go off of that response and then something so amazing will come of this prompt that it will take on a whole life its own and will be reborn an island unto itself. If you achieve that level of awesomeness, praise be and keep doing you. If you achieve another, lesser level of awesomeness that us mere mortals might possibly be able to handle, share it in a comment! 🙂

2 Replies to “Body of Words”

  1. Pam,

    So I’m basically obsessed with using the physical human body in my poems and even when I try not to, it sneaks its way in there. This being said, I love your prompt, and I tried it. While the result is not something that should be seen by human eyes in its current state, I really appreciate the way this prompt challenged me to not use body-centric language in a poem that ended up ultimately being about the physical body (particularly as someone who has a hard time keeping body parts out of poems that don’t even need them). I’m definitely going to work with this more– thanks for the awesome prompt!


  2. Hi Pam,
    I really love the prompt you’ve come up with here. I definitely think I’m going to do this at some point. Like Chloe’s obsession with writing about the human body, I have a bit of an obsession with writing about ink. Generally speaking, a poem that I use “ink” in refers to writing. I’d like to do this exercise in order to break away from using ink as something that is for writing.
    I just remembered in the last poem that we workshopped for you, some of the final lines of your poem had to do with the speaker’s lover mapping the end of a journey on the speaker’s skin. I do not recall if you referenced ink or not, but I certainly feel like ink was being referenced.
    I’m really excited to equate body parts with ink, I can’t wait to see what I come up with.

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