Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Totally Optional Prompt is 'Road Sign Redux'

Take Highway 50 east out of Ely, Nevada, and in thirty miles there's a lane-and-a-half (ie narrow) paved-dirt-paved road north across the desert to the end of Jakes Valley, across Long Valley, and into the bottom end of Ruby Lakes. If you keep going north you get to the interstate between Wells and Elko. The stretch across Long Canyon is a straight-arrow straight dirt road for fifteen miles. From one end you can see the dust plume of the incredibly rare traffic coming from the other end (one time the only traffic was a helicopter coming up the road at ten feet elevation). Out there in the middle of lonesome is a less-than-useful sign:


I've always been intrigued by this less-than-useful sign. This has got to be a metaphor for something.

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In constructing prompts I try to present scenarios that stir me to think and write, in the above I see three possibilities. I'm also interested in what prompts and scenarios trigger your poetry genes. Leave them in a comment for Tiel, or better yet offer to host TOP for a month.

Remarks on the prompt, your latest poetry discovery, or this 'poetry exchange' blog can be made as comments to this posting. Late Wednesday night, between one rerun and another, I'll post a Request For Poems, where you can leave a link to your poem inspired by the prompt, or any other poem you want to share.


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