For now, we’ll start with some of my favorite quick-start poetry prompts, which are guaranteed to help you draft a poem in just 5 minutes!

1. Observation Poem. I like to write poetry to explore abstract things I don’t fully understand, such as happiness or sorrow. And it all starts with images from the physical world. I don’t start out thinking: “Today I’m going to write a poem about ‘joy’.” Instead I might study the butterflies on my cherry tree and scribble words that come to mind such as “tangle,” “nimbus,” and “willy-nilly.” And that’s when joy emerges.