COVID-19 Writing Prompt: Community Poem

Poetry is a party on a page and poems, people and words have PERSONALITIES

Words have personality and life of their own: Happy, Sad, Angry, Lazy

And, in times like these, we can sometimes feel like the universe has completely changed.

What if part of this change was to make us each an inanimate object…our job in this poetry prompt is to pick the object that best represents us during this strange time.

And, then to breathe LIFE into that object.

Every inanimate objects have a personality: stapler, scissors etc

What inanimate object best represents you?

Now here are the simple steps for this poetry prompt:

  • Step 1: What inanimate object best represents you?
  • Step 2: How are you feeling [emotion]?
  • Step 3: Where are you?
  • Step 4: What are you doing?
  • Step 5: ADD alliteration [or rhyming] to the above answers.
  • Step 7 – Step 9,999: Re-write & re-rewrite. “A poem is never finished, only abandoned”—Paul Valery [1871 -1945 ]. Many years ago we learned from a French Poet [Paul Valery] that it is pointless to pen a poem and ever consider it complete. First we write, then we rewrite again and again and again…Until you stop and abandon it… So step 7 can happen once…or repeat it until you decide to abandon its revision…and then share it.

What the above PERSONIFICATION POEM PROMPT does is help us use the magic of Simile and Metaphor to bring a whole new life and poetic perspective to our lives.

All ages may submit their work, but this prompt is recommended for adults and teens. Once you've submitted your poem, we would also encourage you to use your social media account(s) to post a recording  of yourself reading this poem and post & tag us at or on Instagram at @whiteplainslibrary

At the end of May we will use our Facebook page to present a poem that Zork* builds from snippets of the submitted poems.

Simile: a figure of speech involving the comparison of one thing with another thing of a different kind, used to make a description more emphatic or vivid (e.g., as brave as a lion, crazy like a fox)

Metaphor: a figure of speech in which a word or phrase is applied to an object or action to which it is not literally applicable: “I had fallen through a trapdoor of depression,” said Mark, who was fond of theatrical metaphors | her poetry depends on suggestion and metaphor.

  • a thing regarded as representative or symbolic of something else, especially something abstract: the amounts of money being lost by the company were enough to make it a metaphor for an industry that was teetering.

*Eric ZORK Alan, a 11x National Slam Poet competitor, is probably best known for standing on chairs. He is also known for gratuitously dropping names…like that he is the only poet ever to have his book [appropriately called “I am NOT a poet”] blurbed by Davy Jones, Dobie Gray & Wild Cherry. Zork has featured at the hottest poetry venues in America including Chicago’s legendary Green Mill where slam started. He has toured across America visiting High Schools and colleges in his mission to make more poets. He has produced and been featured in a series of “PG Safe Slam” DVDs from the National Poetry Slam to help get Slam poetry into the schools in an educational friendly and appropriate manner. He also performs at and hosts ZorkSlams [student based events] at Barnes & NobleBookstores Nationwide. He hosts Westchester County, NY's largest poetry series and slammaster for the PSI Westchester Slam series @ The White Plains Public Library. For more info go to

To submit your poem to be included in the community poem, fill out and submit the form below by May 13th. Feel free to continue sharing your work throughout the month by submitting and tagging us on social media.

Community Poetry Upload

Community Poetry Upload

We accept documents in pdf, doc and docx formats. Size Under 10MB.

Disclaimer: By submitting my photo, I hereby voluntarily permit and authorize the White Plains Public Library to post in the Library newsletter and on its website my photo. Permission is also granted to the Library to copy, exhibit or publish the photo in print or online. I attest to my ownership of the photo being submitted and that no other person or entity can lay claim to it. Accordingly, I release the Library and its staff acting on its behalf from any and all liability related to further dissemination of my photo.

Maximum file size: 3.07MB

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