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Poetry Prompts

Monday Poetry Prompt: Common Sense

penny-2-1240637-640x480This week let’s write a poem about common sense. I’ve found that common sense is anything but common. Of course, that might just mean I’m the one that’s lacking. Post your results in the comments below.



About Bartholomew Barker

Bartholomew Barker is one of the organizers of Living Poetry, a collection of poets and poetry lovers in the Triangle region of North Carolina. Born and raised in Ohio, studied in Chicago, he worked in Connecticut for nearly twenty years before moving to Hillsborough where he makes money as a computer programmer to fund his poetry habit.


7 thoughts on “Monday Poetry Prompt: Common Sense

  1. My most popular poem is not spoken about as being about common sense but that is exactly what it is. The last sentence came to me out of the blue – I had no idea where it was going until those words appeared, but then it took me a long time to decide on how many lines to give it:


    I’m still frustrated by
    things falling
    But I’m OK with entropy
    And I’m OK with the arrow
    of time.
    If the arrow suddenly
    and it all headed crunch-ward
    (galaxies, the universe, etcetera)
    and the shattered glass really did
    back from the floor
    up on the counter,
    I’d be perplexed—liking
    the one change, but maybe not
    the other.
    You can’t have

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by Cal Nordt | November 28, 2017, 7:17 PM
    • This one starts strong too. I love physics poems. Well done!


      Posted by Bartholomew Barker | November 28, 2017, 11:21 PM
    • I like your poem on your blog – it’s very commonsensical! “Physics” is not only a stand-alone award winner but also was part of a semifinalist trio of poems about physics, sort of, and second and third cannot be said to be about common sense without stretching, although I think “Relativity” actually does explain what relativity is before it careens into an eerie ending.


      I read the universe
      consists mostly of
      smoky stuff we can’t
      see, maybe can’t
      understand, our brains
      not evolved enough
      to ever understand.
      I should have known this
      after all that time spent
      looking into your eyes.


      The Fourteenth
      Dalai Lama and the first
      Albert Einstein say
      everything’s related.
      Yet we feel no movement,
      no planetary rotation, no sense of
      ellipsis, riding this rock around our star.
      Nowhere on Earth
      is the illusion of relative movement
      more profound
      than this self-serve carwash, equipment
      going back and
      forth, pitching up
      and down, while I sit
      again, childlike, feeling the car
      when it’s not, my
      gyroscope confused as easily
      as a moral compass.

      Big cloth rollers knock
      the mirror askew: I see
      that twin, who left on the spaceship
      in 1969, has returned, not aged
      in 40 earth-years. I’m
      wondering if he’s
      come back
      to take my place.

      Liked by 1 person

      Posted by Cal Nordt | November 29, 2017, 12:30 AM
  2. Fun opening. Nice work!


    Posted by Bartholomew Barker | November 27, 2017, 6:39 PM
  3. I see what you did there, with the homophone. Well done Poet!


    Posted by JeanMarie | November 27, 2017, 1:46 PM
  4. I wrote this in Virginia last spring, anticipating my move to Arizona.

    Common Scents

    When someone says the words “common sense”
    they are about to say something crazy.
    – K. J. DeVries

    Scent has always been my favorite sense, and since
    my others have become duller, the essence
    of my memories is reduced to fragrances,
    a kind of travel without spending a cent.

    It’s crazy how a whiff of pine transports me
    to another place, a long-past time;
    although I have the sense to know the science
    behind that trip, I’ll take that flight.

    Common seasonal scents in my back yard
    bring advance nostalgia for the day
    that rain-soaked creosote is all I smell,
    and I will miss the honeysuckle and rose,

    when mint is no longer an invasive weed
    that leads me to sink my arms in thickets
    hiding poison ivy and biting ants, when
    grass is not a nuisance growing in the drive.

    I already miss the day in the future
    when a wet lawn brings back bitter-
    sweet memories of acres of grass
    studded with buttercup and hyacinth,

    grape hyacinth with its strange mildew smell
    overwhelming the violets hidden nearby,
    and dandelions waiting to strike
    unwary toes with green stains.

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by bilocalalia - talking about living in two places | November 27, 2017, 10:17 AM

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