One of the things I liked most about my creative writing and poetry classes were that they gave us prompts (and due dates, to be honest). Of course, it’s nice to be inspired and write your own thing, no rules, but when you’re like me and you tend to let things slide and not push yourself then it’s constructive and helpful. I always felt I was better with prompts, because once you give my brain something to work with it will take it and go off on its own tangent. Sometimes I do find it hard to become inspired without prompting, which is something I should probably work on.
I don’t know if this is a well known prompt or not, but one of the fun prompts my poetry professor gave us in class was the “Snapple cap prompt.” If you’ve ever had a Snapple tea you know that on the bottom of the cap there is a random fact, kind of like a know-it-all fortune cookie.
The prompt is simple. You take your fact from the Snapple cap and write a poem based around it. I included the fact pretty much word for word in my poem, but you can do whatever you want. After all, it’s all about inspiring you to write something whether you want it for practice, to get out of a rut, or just for fun. In my opinion, the less rules the better so do whatever you want with it!
My prompt was “Dragonflies have six legs but cannot walk.” We probably only had about 10 minutes to write our poems because we were in class, but again you can do whatever you want since you don’t have a professor and class times to worry about. If it helps you to set a timer or a challenge for yourself then go for it. Here’s my attempt from a few years ago.
Obviously it’s not the most amazing poem ever written or anything, but it is a fun prompt to mess around with. I have to admit as well that I’m the weirdo who drinks Snapple for the deliciousness (obsessed with the peach tea) and forgets to read the fact. Next time I buy Snapple I’ll have to remember to actually check them and maybe I’ll get some fun prompts.