PAD 2022 – Day 4

Today I tried to blend two prompts, the first being “another word for salvation” and the second being to write a poem in the form of a prompt. Intriguing, right? The example given was by Mathias Svalina, who posts his surrealist prompt poems on Instagram. You can find examples here, and here, and here.

I am absolutely wild about this style of poem, and wish mine had turned out half as cool as his are, but I will share it anyway:

Writing Prompt

  1. In your notebook, with a black pen, write three words that remind you of salvation.
  2. Say them out loud.
  3. Tear them from the book, crumple or fold the paper, and offer it to the wind.
  4. Place your hand on your chest and feel
  5. it rise, as you suck a portion of that wind deep into your lungs.
  6. Hold.
  7. Think of the taste of an orange.
  8. Your eyes are shut, but you know there is sunlight because it is not completely dark.
  9. Not even in here.
  10. Think of the first time you made someone’s face blush with playful embarrassment or
  11. lust. Remember the first time it happened to you. If the memories match, you can hold
  12. on longer to that breath. If they don’t, you can too.
  13. Think of the sound of a closing door.
  14. Count backward from four as you release what you’re holding.
  15. The whisper over your lips is the poem.

Photo by Pixabay on


PAD 2022 – Day 2

For today’s PAD challenge, I went with the 30/30 prompt “corresponding with ghosts.” Fitting, because today would have been my Mom’s 79th birthday, so ghosts of a sort are on my mind.

I came up with a short poem, inspired by a ouija board, that I might expand on at some point. My one line to share is:

I don’t need a planchette to lead me to you. There are always dreams,

strange and funny. Absurdity is a good balm.

Photo by cottonbro on

PAD 2021 – Day 3

Working today from the 30/30 prompt “cold sweat.” I frequently have nightmares, including last night! Even so, I love reading about the origins of the word and artistic depictions throughout history.

If it’s just a bad dream then why is it that

the worst ones
don’t leave the chest
even after you’re awake?
You might breathe fine 
throughout the day,
cold sweat dried, racing heart
but still it presses,
a burrowing worry
that drinks air
and reason
through its blackened roots.

The Nightmare, 1781 oil painting by Anglo-Swiss artist Henry Fuseli.