NaPoWriMo 2020 Day 8



Our featured participant today is clayandbranches, where the news poem for Day 7 takes an article about a far-off world and brings it close to home..

Today’s poetry resource is a series of twitter accounts that tweet phrases from different poets’ work. The Sylvia Plath Bot, as you might expect, tweets snippets of Plath. @PercyBotShelley tweets Shelley, @ruefle_exe tweets bits of Mary Ruefle’s poems, and @carsonbot and @sikenpoems send into the world small fragments of the work of Anne Carson and Richard Siken.

And if you’re feeling puckish, perhaps you might enjoy (or enjoy the act of not-enjoying) the “poems” created by @VogonBot. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the Vogons are aggressive aliens who, in addition to destroying the Earth, have an unpleasant habit of reading their poetry – known as the third worst in the entire universe – to their victims.

Our prompt for the day asks you to peruse the work of one or more of these twitter bots, and use a line or two, or a phrase or even a word that stands out to you, as the seed for your own poem. 

There’s actually quite a respectable lineage of poems that start with a line by another poet, such as this poem by Robert Duncan, or this one by Lisa Robertson



This is a really fun day which I will be coming back to in the future to generate more poetry. I have written using a line from another poem as starting point, it’s called a glose.

I visited the participant’s site I like the use of refrain and the end resolution, I also liked the idea that the NaPo poetry here is time limited.

PS–All the poems written this April will remain online for up to five days, after which they will be replaced by an excerpt, an erasure, or a thoroughly amateurish art piece that will only allow for bits of the original poem to peek through. At least, this is the plan. The reason being that, at some point, in the hopefully not too distant future, these drafts will undergo revision and begin their multiple-year pilgrimage through the slush piles of many a literary journal. So help me, O Muse.

I used to do this – just a phrase or a line for each day from the ‘kept secret’ poem. Parallel to this was a conversation I had today with some poets about NaPoWriMo. We talked about how you can share your NaPoWriMo work and still be able to publish them if you are submitting to places that want unpublished work. You can share on private groups on social media but posting them on blogs and publicly is considered published.

Which is why I write about the process of writing and approaching the prompts. Both my books have poems in them which started life as NaPo poems. It is also worth mentioning (which I forgot in the earlier conversation) that you may want to sit on your work for a while/ definitely edit, editors will be inundated with NaPo poems.


I then started a tour of Twitter. Which was FUN. I chose to use the @carsonbot and chose;

‘Where does unbelief begin?’

I wrote a poem which has legs and will be worked on and possibly integrated into a short sequence. Today’s resource was abundant in possibilities and playfulness. I mean when have the Vogan every managed to get a mention in NaPo before?! Brilliant!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s