Poetry Prompts for Language Lovers

poetry prompts

Love language? These poetry prompts are for you.

Poets have a unique relationship with language. For a poet, language is more than a tool for communication; it’s a set of paints and paintbrushes that can be used to create scenes and images that resonate with readers.

A poet must then foster a loving relationship with language, learning its secrets, understanding its idiosyncrasies, and mastering its structure, then bending it to the poet’s own will.

Today’s poetry prompts pay credence to language and encourage a more thorough mastery of grammar, sentence structure, and all things wordy.

Poetry Prompts

The exercise is quite simple. From the list of poetry prompts below, select at least five words or phrases and then use them to write a poem of your own. If you want to challenge yourself, choose more than five; go for ten or fifteen, or see how many you can squeeze into one poem.

You can also challenge yourself by writing a poem that is not strictly about language, writing, or poetry. Use these words as symbols or metaphors, or personify them to give them new meaning.

You’ll find that some of these words lend themselves quite well to alternative meanings. For example, dash could mean running quickly rather than a punctuation mark that looks like hyphen. Give yourself room to be creative with these poetry prompts.


Feel free to come back and post your poem if you decide to use these poetry prompts to make a poem of your own. Even if you don’t attempt this exercise, be sure to keep writing!

Got any poetry prompts or writing exercises to share? Leave a comment!

Creative Writing Prompts

About Melissa Donovan
Melissa Donovan is a website designer and copywriter. She writes fiction and poetry and is the founder and editor of Writing Forward, a blog packed with creative writing tips and ideas.


8 Responses to “Poetry Prompts for Language Lovers”

  1. Greer says:

    Hi Melissa,

    I am so intrigued by this idea, I wish someone had left one in the comments. Do you have any examples?

    It’s been a long time since I’ve left a comment- I hope you’re well.

    Greers last blog post..Could I Look Into A Book…

  2. Greer says:

    I really enjoyed reading those, thank you :). Reading this and rereading one of your posts on freewrites has made me long to get back to this kind of thing. You’re always an inspiration.

    Greers last blog post..Tight Knit

  3. t.sterling says:

    This definitely seems like a good challenge I’m game enough to try. I think it’d really help jumpstart the poetry writing process for me while helping express some things I have to get out of my system anyway (since writing is my #1 form of self expression and its the easiest way for me to talk about someone/something without everone or maybe that someone knowing exactly who or what I’m talking about). Thanks.

    t.sterlings last blog post..“x-men origins: wolverine” review

  4. K.Anuradha says:

    Hi Milissa,

    I was checking out creative writing sites and found this amazing website.Writing is my hobby and have been writing, but I like poetry prompts and am enjoying trying out.

    Its now inspiring me to write with better skills. Thanks a lot.