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Poetry Exercise: Write an Alphabet Poem

Veronica has poetry and short stories published in several literary journals. She holds an MA in Literature from American University.

"Alphabets" by Tomohiro Tokunaga

"Alphabets" by Tomohiro Tokunaga


It's no secret that writing poetry can be challenging. Successful poets put a lot of thought, time, and effort behind their seemingly effortless poems.

That being said, anyone can write poetry! And writing poetry is actually a lot of fun. Whether you're a seasoned poet, or someone just getting their feet wet, practicing different forms of poetry and experiencing different ways to create poems make writing a fun journey of discovery.

The following exercise is part of a series of prompts. These prompts are made to help get your creative juices flowing, and push you out of your comfort zone.

Find the first poetry exercise here.

Poetry Exercise #2: Write an Alphabet Poem

For this exercise, we're going to write an alphabet poem. There are many different versions of alphabet writing, both in poetry and fiction. But for the sake of this challenge, write a 26 (roughly) word poem, where each word uses one letter from the alphabet. For example, "Aaron bites cats..." or "A bear collects..." This can get tricky when you get to certain letters like "X," but not impossible. Get creative! You can challenge yourself to use the letters in alphabetical order, or mix up the letters as you see fit.

A good way to start your poem is to write out the alphabet, and next to each letter write out some interesting words starting with that letter. Think of verbs, nouns, names, adjectives, but don't forget the necessary little words like "a," "the," "in," "has," etc. Cross off the letters as you write out your poem.

"Alice Became Calm:" An Alphabet Poem

Here is my alphabet poem. You can see I cheated a bit when I got to "X," but overall I'm happy with the result.

Alice Became Calm
by Veronica McDonald

Alice became calm,
defying everyone, forcefully
growing herself into jail.
Kundalini laughs,
meandering nearby, now over
poor, quiet, red-stained spine,
tactfully undermining victorious wonders,
X-ing out young zeal.

"Praying for a Savior" by Veronica McDonald (2018). All rights reserved.

"Praying for a Savior" by Veronica McDonald (2018). All rights reserved.

Post Your Poem

If you followed this exercise to create a poem, post your poem or an excerpt in the comments. I would love to see what you come up with.

© 2020 Veronica McDonald


Veronica McDonald (author) from Alabama on January 19, 2020:

That’s great, Brenda. I’m glad this exercise inspired you :)

Scroll to Continue

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on January 18, 2020:


I decided to try this one more time.

Angels beaming

come down eternally from God’s heaven...

I published it also. You can read the rest of it there.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Veronica McDonald (author) from Alabama on January 17, 2020:

Thank you for participating Brenda and Cathy! I truly enjoyed both of your poems.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on January 17, 2020:

I decided to publish the poem I wrote from your exercise.

Thank you for this challenge.

Here is the beginning...

After becoming clinically depressed

even friendships give her intense jeopardy,

Cathy Drummond on January 16, 2020:

a better case defies e-space. for good has infiltrated, just know like most notoriously. open purposely, quite really successfully. tenaciously unexplained, very whimsically. xenophobics, you're zeros.

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