So my friend Amanda and I have started attending these inspirational lunches. When I say attend, what I mean is that we bring our lunches out to the Common and read to each other. We bring old poetry and new. I sing to her. Another friend tells us the story of an aggressive duck through interpretive dance. We laugh. I smile. We come up with “assignments.”
Ideas for inspirational lunch members or lunchers, as I will call them for now:
- Make up a line of poetry for a luncher; they then have to use it as the first line in their poem
- Write a response poem or song to an original piece from a fellow luncher.
- Pick a form or type of poetry and bring in a new piece the following week in that form.
- Make a list of subjects you’ve never written about, but wanted to; then write a poem using the top three topics.
- Pick a favorite poem (original or famous) and rewrite it.
- Pick a poem from childhood and rewrite it.
- Write a poem about a dream.
- Pick a color and try to express that color in a poem without using the color itself.
- Write a slam poem.
- Write a haiku, then create a longer poem from that same haiku.
- Use a photograph for inspiration.
- Open a dictionary and flip through it, choosing ten words at random. Use those ten words in a poem.
- Give a luncher a controversial topic to write about.
- Pick a news story and write a poem inspired by the headline (or use the headline as a first line).
There are hundreds, nay, thousands of ideas out there. Probably infinite, though in calculus I usually ended up approaching zero (no matter how hard I tried for the alternative). But the ideas for ideas are not really the point of these lunches. These lunches are meant to keep us writing, to snap us out of the creative funk we’re facing in the wake of finals and futures. If Amanda is anything like me, she needs to write to stay grounded. I outsource my stresses to my song lyrics. They keep me sane. And when the lyrics stop flowing, when the creative well has dried up, all that’s left is a publishing student with an empty journal and an empty heart. Just recently, I was able to transfer files from an old laptop onto my new one. What I realized in this transfer is that I was a firecracker with words when I was 11, but now? I lack opinion. I lack stance. These inspirational lunches are my way back to finding my voice, to finding me