Prompt for September 30 – Virtual Didier Dumas

We didn’t need dialogue. We had faces.

Gloria Swanson as Nora Desmond, Sunset Boulevard

Use the prompt to inspire your work in any form (poetry or prose; fiction of any genre; creative nonfiction, essay, or memoir).

Join our virtual meeting at 8pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 7pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Thank you to Lithub for inspiring the prompt. (“Turn and Face the Strange” by Darcey Steinke)

And thank you to Hollywood.

Prompt for September 25 – Virtual Barat House

A Moment’s Interlude

One night I wandered alone from my comrades’ huts;
The grasshoppers chirped softly
In the warm misty evening;
Bracken fronds beckoned from the darkness
With exquisite frail green fingers;
The tree gods muttered affectionately about me,
And from the distance came the grumble of a kindly train.

I was so happy to be alone,
So full of love for the great speechless earth,
That I could have laid my cheek in the wet grasses
And caressed with my lips the hard sinewy body
Of Earth, the cherishing mistress of bitter lovers.

–Richard Aldington

Log into our virtual meeting at 1pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 12pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Notes on the prompt

We’ve all heard, talked, and read a lot about isolation in recent months on social media and in mainstream circles; about disconnection; about how much we miss the bustle of society and constant contact. The flip side of this, which only gets mentioned occasionally and with a strong sense of guilt, is that we’ve all experienced solitude in the positive sense far more frequently also: the vibrant hush of a moment in the natural world, the moment of nesting into self that can’t fully happen during an hourlong commute. This somewhat sentimental poem seemed to be about one such secret revel in solitude, a moment in which we “bitter lovers” of the world can let down our guard.

Prompt for September 23 – Virtual Didier Dumas

And then we did a fateful thing: we left our home.

From Inferno: A Memoir of Motherhood and Madness by Catherine Cho

Use the prompt to inspire your work in any form (poetry or prose; fiction of any genre; creative nonfiction, essay, or memoir).

Join our virtual meeting at 8pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 7pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Prompt for September 18 – Virtual Barat House

Love was changing the minds of pretenders

Use the prompt to inspire your work in any form (poetry or prose; fiction of any genre; creative nonfiction, essay, or memoir).

Log into our virtual meeting at 1pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 12pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

A deeper dive into the prompt.

Prompt for September 16 – Virtual Didier Dumas

Shoulder Surfing

It’s a form of eavesdropping . . . Gleaning stories that are none of your business from an over-the-shoulder glimpse of another person’s phone screen.

Use the prompt to inspire your work in any form (poetry or prose; fiction of any genre; creative nonfiction, essay, or memoir).

Join our virtual meeting at 8pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 7pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Thanks to Lithub for inspiring the prompt with “When I’m Telling a Story I Imagine the Eavesdropper Over My Shoulder,” a recent profile of author Walter Mosley.

Prompt for September 11 – Virtual Barat House

Hunger

I was surprised to find that a search of the term “hunger” offers up 31 pages of poetry and discussion on poets.org. Skimming the results, I’m reminded that hunger might be a call for social justice from inmates and teachers; it might portray emotional starvation. It’s a frequent word in recent headlines as Covid-19 disrupts supply lines. And I’m also reminded that it can be fed and satisfied.

Log into our virtual meeting at 1pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 12pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Prompt for September 9 – Virtual Didier Dumas

In the Woodpile . . .

My dog thinks it’s a chipmunk, and it drives her bonkers. But my uncle used to say it was a copperhead. Might it be a basilisk? Who knows? Use the prompt to inspire your work in any form (poetry or prose; fiction of any genre; creative nonfiction, essay, or memoir).

Join our virtual meeting at 8pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 7pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Prompt for September 3 – Virtual Barat House

September Moon

In the Northern Hemisphere, September’s full moon marks the harvest season. (Pumpkin spice rises again!) Grand and pervasive as the harvest season is, though, the September moon rises over countless settings more varied and intimate. Imagine the September moon’s-eye view. Use the prompt to inspire your work in any form (poetry or prose; fiction of any genre; creative nonfiction, essay, or memoir).

Log into our virtual meeting at 1pm for readings and discussion.

If you prefer to post your work to our blog, visit Submittable after 12pm to upload your work. We will do our best to publish everything we receive.

Wednesday September 7 – Oops! Borrowing Prompt, Zoom link remains the same.

Please use the Prompt for August 28 – Virtual Barat House for tonight. The Link

Zoom meeting link for our 8pm meeting.

Thank you

David