A photograph to inspire poetry: Rose of Sharon

Rose of Sharon

Above is a photograph of a flower that might be called Rose of Sharon.  It can inspire poetry.  For example, a poet might write about:

  • Some sort of occasion with yellow flowers.

  • The change of colors from the outside to the in: Yellow, Red, Yellow, Brown.

  • Something to do with the possible name of the plant.

  • A comparison between the yellow flower and the sun.


Here is an example poem inspire by the photograph:

Shadows fall,
on the yellow hills,
as fires burn,
within the valley,
and the last tree stands,


A photograph to inspire poetry: Up through a tree

Up through a tree

This photograph was taken looking up through a tree.  It is a different perspective than a photograph that looks horizontally or down.  Some poetry inspirations from it, include:

  • Poems about fall. The leaves are changing color on this tree as it is fall.

  • Poems about perspective. As this photograph was taken from a different perspective, this idea could inspire poetry about looking at something from a different perspective.

  • Poems about aiming for a goal. This photograph was taken by looking up.  The idea of looking up could be translated to the idea of aiming for a goal.  This idea could be used in a poem.

  • Poems about people dwelling in an apartment building. This tree is like an apartment, in that many creatures presumably live in it (although none seem apparent in the photograph).  This idea could be translated to people and poems could be written about it.

Artwork to inspire poetry: five minute tree

five minute tree

This is an artwork to inspire poetry.  It called five minute tree.  This tree was made using computer software.  Before the tree was started, a timer was set for five minutes.  The actual artwork itself was only worked on for the duration of the timer (the program was opened before the timer, and the artwork was saved and then used for this post after the timer).

The idea here was to have an arbitrary restriction on art and see the result.  In this case, the restriction was time.  Some things came from this restriction:

  • The tree has no leaves.
  • There are some areas of the tree, like very thick branches, that would have been changed if given the time.
  • The top of the tree is not shown.
  • There is no background around the tree.
  • The tree has few details.
  • There are only two shades of brown in the tree.
  • There are no extras, like birds’ nests, in the tree.

The fact that time was restricted, led to a different artwork than if it wasn’t.  This same idea could be applied to poetry.  A poet could set a time limit (or other restriction) on the creation of a poem and see what the result is.  Like using a form for a poem, having restrictions can change the outcome.

In addition to the restriction used to create this artwork, it can also inspire poetry by itself.  Poets could write about a tree with no leaves, for example.  They could, for example, compare the idea of a tree with no leaves in winter, with the idea of a tree with no leaves in summer.  In the first case, there is a sense of hope, in the second, there might not be.

Post Series: The Christmas Series: A photograph to inspire poetry: Citrus fruits on a tree

Citrus fruits on a tree

This is a photograph of citrus fruits on a tree.  While citrus fruits on a tree might not seem Christmas related, they in fact are.

First, these citrus fruits were on this particular tree on December 19, 2015.  Presumably, they will be on the tree on Christmas.

Second, Christmas trees are evergreens.  Although M. Sakran is not knowledgeable of the botanical definition of an evergreen, under the assumption that an evergreen is a tree that retains its leaves all year, then this citrus tree, at least where M. Sakran lives, appears to be an evergreen.

Third, Christmas is often celebrated in part with ornaments on evergreen trees.  If ornaments are considered to be a bright decoration, and in particular spherical ones, then these fruits on this evergreen tree (again, assuming it is an evergreen tree) are, in fact, natural Christmas ornaments.

Fourth, citrus fruits, although not necessarily these as they have proven to be quite sour, can often be a nice treat on Christmas day.

For the above reasons, this photograph of citrus fruits on a tree is Christmas related.  As such, it can inspire Christmas related poetry.  Some ideas include poems about:

  • Christmas treats (particularly citrus fruits)
  • Ornaments in nature
  • The natural world and Christmas
  • Things that might not at first glance seem Christmas related, being written about as being Christmas related

Poem Series: Experimental Poetry Forms: Symmetry: Beneath canopy leaves

Outside beneath canopy leaves,
resting in shade hidden from sun,
little soft eyes watch as squirrels run,
as a small bird quietly weaves,
thinking of what working achieves,
butterflies land softly for fun,
and underneath quietly done,
slowly eyes close under leaf eaves.


(4/40) Experimental Poetry Form: Symmetry

Post Series: The Citrus Series: Poetry topic idea: Imperfection

Today’s poetry topic idea comes from the Citrus Series.  In the other posts of the series, various ideas were mentioned or illustrated.  One idea that has not been mentioned is that of imperfection.  The surface of the unripe citrus fruit in the photograph is not smooth.  It has imperfections.  Imperfection is the poetry topic idea for today.

Like many things, imperfection could be viewed from different angles.  It might be seen as positive.  For example, a golf ball is not perfectly smooth, and yet this is done on purpose to improve how it is used.  Alternatively, imperfections could be viewed negatively.  They can be seen as flaws.  An example might be an imperfection in a piece of machinery that causes it not to work.  Lastly, imperfections could be indifferent.  Something might be a centimeter off, but no one notices and it has no effect.

The idea of imperfection and the different angles from which it can be viewed can be used as a topic for poetry.  For example, if a poet wanted to relate the idea of imperfection directly to the subject of the photograph of the Citrus Series, a poet might pick some imperfection and view it from the three different angles.  For example, a poet might write a poem about where the tree the fruit is growing on is growing.  They could describe how that place does not match the ideal (for example it is too far north or south, or too shady or sunny, or on too small a piece of land or with too much open space around it) and write how those things affect the tree and the fruit.  They could write in a poem how the imperfections have positive, negative and indifferent effects.