I'm back from vacation and even though I didn't write much (my aspirations for writing 1000 words a day flew right out the window and got lost in the tumbleweed somewhere in the Nevada desert), I did do a really interesting writing exercise while visiting my brother in Portland.
Here's the general gist: It's a collaborative effort, so you'll need at least a couple other writing folks to make it work.
1. First, the group of you will do a 15 minute free write based off of a prompt. My sister in law came up with our prompt, "With the rocks whirling in the flat lands, the daffodils..."
2. Next we passed our notebooks clockwise and read through our neighbor's free write, underlining words and phrases that really jumped out at us.
3. Finally we passed the notebooks one final time and, using the the underlined words and passages, rearranged them into a poem.
Here's the poem that my brother created from my free write:
Abandoned behind the peach
the sun makes past loves or even current
into warm squash, the core that held the food.
Someone they once knew
made excuses but then forgot,
lolled about, snapped,
dressed a table beside meshy bulbs
and thin crystal with thin green necks,
as if to strip themselves,
snipped by silver,
wrought by a sweating palm.
It was astounding not only how varied each of our poems turned out, but how each of us approached the free write from such vastly different perspectives. If you're curious to read the other poems, visit Fauxy's Lucky Scramble, my sister-in-law's new writing blog.