NaPoWriMo, Day 5: Spring Flowers and the Utility of Theft


Trillium, Lake Padden Park, Bellingham, WA (Photo by J.B. Kummer)

Today’s prompt is derived from the famous quotation attributed to T.S. Eliot: “Good poets borrow, great poets steal.” Though that’s not precisely how he put it, the prompt is to “steal” a line from someone else’s poem and use it as a first line.

In the interest of ethics, I just want you to know:  I gave it right back when I was done.


I had been hungry all the years–
what nutriment was there in a winter lengthy and untranslatable?

But today, April–and the forest filling up
with buds of huckleberry, salal, Oregon grape–

and, as God is my grocery list,
warblers, flickers, chickadees, crested jays

discussing amongst themselves
the construction of nests–

and, down in the leaf litter, trillium,
savoring the air in all three of its pointed languages.

Dickinson asks, what bird, what stem
is exempt from needsong and burgeoning?

4 comments on “NaPoWriMo, Day 5: Spring Flowers and the Utility of Theft

  1. Nice!
    Oh, I’m glad you gave the first line right back!

  2. sonofwalt says:

    What a delightful line: “as god is my grocery list!” Pow. I love it.

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