• Christine Delea

April 17: First Line Done

Write a poem in which the title is Poem with a First Line by ______ _________. Below are your choices (or use one you find yourself).

After the apples were plucked and packed in care baskets, (Shirley Geok-lin Lim, The


Don’t put your disembodied voice in an envelope (Cathy Appel, Letters)

I’ll do what I must if I’m bold in real time. (Agha Shahid Ali, Ghazal)

One sound. Then the hiss and whir (Louise Gluck, The Garden)

These leaves which have yellowed and are aloft (Cornelius Eady, Hardheaded Weather)

All the new thinking is about loss. (Robert Hass, Meditation at Lagunitas)

When the shooting began (Fady Joudah, Anonymous Song)

Once the world was perfect, and we were happy in that world. (Joy Harjo, Once the World

Was Perfect)

I fell out of my mother slick as a gosling. (Natalie Eilbert, My Maiden Name Is)

Because I must walk (Tarfia Faizullah, En Route to Bangladesh, Another Crisis of Faith)

He dines alone surrounded by reflections (Robert Hayden, Witch Doctor)

I live a small life, barely bigger than a speck, ( Lucia Perillo, Say This)

This is what our dying looks like. (Jericho Brown, Another Elegy)

The buildings are worn. (Elizabeth Woody, Home and the Homeless) Pandemic of lilies (Morgan Parker, My Sister Says White Supremacy Is Turning Her Crazy)

In a modern museum (Yehuda Amichai, Endless Poem)

She was the nameless woman who created (Lorna Goodison, Praise to the mother of

Jamaican art)

He thinks when we die we’ll go to China. (Cathy Song, Heaven)

Ink runs from the corners of my mouth. (Mark Strand, Eating Poetry)

It takes just two people to bring the world (Eric Gamalinda, Factory of Souls)

Here even the darkness (Kevin Young, Early Show)

Love set you going like a fat gold watch. (Sylvia Plath, Morning Song)

Light is more important than the lantern, (Nizar Qabbani, Light Is More Important)

Somewhere in kentucky she went for kicks (Rosebud Ben-One, A Horse Dies Once That

Is a Lie)

Out in this desert we are testing bombs, (Adrienne Rich, Trying to Talk with a Man)

There’s a farm auction up the road. (Diane Glancy, Indian Summer)

For a saving grace, we didn’t see our dead, (Howard Nemerov, The War in the Air)

Without the sun filtered through closed eyelids, (The Dream of a Fire Engine, Kimiko


She leans across a golden table (Countee Cullen, For Amy Lowell)

Here is the shadow of truth, for only the shadow is true. (Robert Penn warren, A Way to

Love God)

All Greece hates (H.D., Helen)

It was a time when they were afraid of him. (Jimmy Santiago Baca, Ancestor)

at a barbeque they sing (Clarissa Mendiola, Reunion)

I like a look of Agony (Emily Dickinson, 241)

Let the rain kiss you. (Langston Hughes, April Rain Song)

it is prohibited to whisper the names of the dead, (Crisosto Apache, Death)

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