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Include the words “formal” and “casual” at some point in your poem

Take your Place

One of the great things about this poetry project so far is that we have started to develop a community. We have regular contributors, occasional contributors and readers. A sense of community is important in poetry. Because the market for poetry is so small compared to the fiction market, it needs constant support to keep going.

There are many benefits to joining or creating a poetry community. You gain the support of your peers. You have the opportunity to compare yourself with and learn from other poets. You encourage each other to keep going. You meet the people who can help you down the road.

The people who publish other people’s poetry do it because they love it. There is no great financial benefit, and it is certainly easier to make money publishing something else. The best way to get noticed by these people is to get out in the poetry community and start introducing yourself. Attend poetry readings. Take poetry classes. Attend open mic nights and poetry slams. Get up on stage if you can. Support other people’s poetry by buying their books and magazines. The more you support poetry the more it will support you.

Today’s Assignment

Include the words “formal” and “casual” at some point in your poem.


  1. Codeword Cocktail Attire

    I knew it was a formal affair

    What would I do without my family here?

    To inquire
    “What are you going to wear?”

    But not
    in the lighthearted, curious
    way of giggling girls
    with fancy schmancy
    wedding day aspirations

    More like

    “How big will the potted silk plant be
    that we will need to seat you behind?”


    “Thank the dear sweet lord
    for floor-length table cloths
    to hide those shoes!”

    I did my best

    And for one split second
    in the mirror at home
    the outfit was perfect!

    But then

    I took a breath
    and everything shifted

    Visible bra strap is a fashion thing, right?

    Poking out boob top, not so much

    So I stuffed and prodded and readjusted
    until correct cleavage containment was achieved

    Stood up for the first toast
    and felt a half-acre of fabric
    like a silky flowy river
    coursing through the canyon
    of my ass

    in an epic wedgie pick
    that is probably still the stuff of family legend
    for all seated behind me

    Don’t look at me like that!

    I read the invitation

    Aren’t you glad
    I didn’t dress casual?

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