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Where do your poems come from?

Have you ever read a poem that made you feel inspired to write one, yourself? Maybe it was a certain line that touched you. Maybe it was the theme behind the poem. Maybe you agreed or disagreed so fiercely it set you on fire until the poem jumped from your fingertips?

Or, maybe you just think it's fun to interact with other poets, enjoy making word puzzles out of new ideas, and are curious about what your poetry might inspire others to write.

That sounds good to me. So what now?

Interactive Poetry is a new Yahoo Community (Club) that has been set up to pursue interactive response poetry. Poems are posted in the message section of the club, and replies are added to the club as response poems are posted. It is possible to trace the links backwards by following the "the message is a reply to message #___ " links. It's also possible to see what has been added to your poems by using "view replies to this message".

All you need is a Yahoo ID (free!) to join in the fun! Visit for more information on Yahoo Clubs.

Or go straight to the Interactive Poetry Club!

How is this different from other Interactive Poetry sites?

There are several terrific sites on the web for Interactive Poetry that I have found, and I'm sure there are many more I haven't discovered yet. Most of these sites are truly add-on poems, where multiple authors join in on writing one poem. If that sounds like fun to you, check out the links below!

Our club differs in that each poem is a stand-alone poem, inspired by or in some way related to a previous poem posted. Sometimes these can lead to interesting migrations of topics! It is a poetic version of Whisper Down the Lane or Telephone(childhood games, remember?) - where the thread starts is probably nowhere near where it will end!

I hope that you will come join the fun. Until then - happy writing!

With Special Thanks
to our contributing members
for their ongoing support

More on how it works:

You read the poetry in the message lists. The most recent poems show up first. To look back through the history, choose "view all" for Messages, about the top-middle right of your screen. You can then start with earlier poems and read forward with the progression.

The example poems on this page are being posted with the permission of their authors. All rights are reserved.

The first poem in our example was a response to a previous poem, so we are entering mid-thread:

Interactive Poetry
#14 by harvymon

      The summer sun so brightly shone
      Upon the sandy shore
      The children frolicing the day away
      carefree in their play
      My friends talk to me as if I'm listening
      I pretend to be although,
      They know I'm not
      My mind wanders,
      In and out of conversation,
      Between reality and the one I create,
      Essentials for creativity and growth,
      they belong to me,
      the things I choose to let stay,
      to become a part of creation,
      and what goes out the other side


Come Join the Fun!
Replies to this message

There is a link at the bottom of the poem to Read Replies to this message. If any poems have been written against the current poem, clicking on that link will bring you to a list of messages that are in reply to this one. For the purposes of our Club, these should be response poems.

The response poem can be anything that was somehow inspired by the original poem. It could be a continuation of an idea, or a reaction in opposition to an idea. It could be a fragment / tangent idea that catches your eye. It could be one particular line that inspires. It's all fair game, as long as 1) it is not disrespectful to the original poem - please play nice and 2) it relates in some way to the original poem.

Consider this reply:

Interactive Poetry
#16 by kevincraig_2000

      A sad and twisted dervish,
      Thrust upon this land
      Which does not know the light of day,
      The way a rose will dip and sway.
      There is no wonder on this grassless plain,
      I wander though I never reveal
      the footstep motions
      Of my monotonous winter gloom.
      There is no place I'd go
      To find the wisdom of a single daisy
      Thrust upon the landscape
      with angry hated breath.


This message is a reply to Msg #14
Come Join the Fun!
Replies to this message

Can you find a theme being carried forward in this example?

In each, there is a person who is not revealing all of his or her true feelings. I'm sure if you look more closely at the poems you can come up with your own interpretations for parallels and inspirations!

The bottom of the second poem contains a link to the poem responded to (on the left) and another link to view further replies. Therefore, no matter where you start, if your poem is part of a thread you can choose to go forward and backwards through the thread!

The next poem moved away from the theme of the person with hidden feelings, and focused more on the imagery of the last three lines, starting with to find the wisdom of a single daisy.

Interactive Poetry
#34 by suzstina

      ivory petals facing
      repeated whiplash
      the hateful angry
      breath of the wind
      sieges yet she
      stands tall
      if battered
      watch me world
      she seems to say
      I persevere
      wild in my being
      i still stand
      and you
      could learn from me
      if you dared


This message is a reply to Msg #16
Come Join the Fun!

Again, it is possible to move backwards and forwards within the thread.

Join us and give it a try for yourself! It's a great exercise in writing poetry, and we'd love to have your input!

Special thanks to Jenn (harvymon) and Kevin (KevinCraig_2000) for allowing me to use their poems as examples.

To Poem Tree

September 2000


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