Finding Poetic Inspiration

I’ve had a few poets ask me about poetic inspiration. Where do you find it, and how do you go about acquiring this precious commodity?

I dedicated a section in Word Craft: Prose & Poetry, The Art of Crafting Syllabic Poetry to just that subject. In my opinion, inspiration is everywhere. But not everyone feels that way.

Here are a few suggestions to find your own poetic inspiration:

  • Get outside in nature. Go for walks and observe the world around you.
  • Take notes. Keep your observations and thoughts in a notebook or in your phone.
  • Take photos. If you photograph your inspiration, you can write about how the photo captured the scene and memorialized it for that moment in time.
  • Write about your own experiences.
  • Read other poetry written by the greats and new poets.
  • Free write your thoughts for five minutes and see what inspires you.
  • Create a vision board!

Yes… create a vision board for your poetry. This is a fun exercise. If you love to take photos, create a vision board for your poem.

Vision board created with

I used a vision board to create this haiku. I went through a bunch of photos on for inspiration.

Things to note:

  1. Haiku are untitled.
  2. My syllable count is 3-5-3.
  3. My kigo is loud thunder—which signifies a season (really any season). It can thunder in all four seasons depending on where you live in the United States.
  4. The ending should be a surprise. This is the pivot. That is when you talk about one thing and then switch to talking about another thing. In my haiku, sunshine rain is the pivot.
  5. The pivot is where we create that juxtaposition of divergent or convergent images that compliment each other. We recognize this reaction as the “aha” moment.

We hear the thunder and see the clouds swirling. Then, the sun breaks through and the rain begins to fall. It looks like it’s raining sunshine. It’s a magical moment, one that you can remember by immortalizing it with a haiku.

We can use vision boards for many kinds of literary inspiration. Charli Mills, from, taught me how to use a vision board in her “Vision Planting” class I took with her this spring.

Charli Mills’ advice:

“Represent your vision with the tools of manifestation—use a vision board to create poetry.” @Charli_Mills #inspiration

I’ve done the work of researching these syllabic forms for you. Word Craft: Prose & Poetry is available as an Ebook and a Print book. Let’s write syllabic poetry together! ❤

I’m still having glitches with the themes on the wordcraftpoetry blog. WordPress must be doing more updates. The simpler themes seem to work better. So here I am, again… Sorry for all the switching around. This theme seems to be stable.

44 thoughts on “Finding Poetic Inspiration”

        1. Read the Tuesday post and follow the directions. Sometimes we use themes, sometimes we find synonymns for two words, and sometimes we use a given photo for inspiration. The new post will be up on Tuesday. ❤


    1. You could use a cork board or a virtual board, like I did. I cut out images from a magazine and created an image board for how to grow violets! I could see this working for longer poetry forms , as well. 😍🌸

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  1. Great tips Colleen. I’m lucky to have a symbiotic link with a few of those. The photographing and vision board are a couple I want to take on.

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  2. Love your ideas, Colleen! I thought I had the perfect theme for Eugi’s Milieu until I couldn’t use the preview feature. Seems, many of the themes don’t work properly. Sigh!

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    1. It’s been horrible again. On the pages, they’ve taken away the media & text block. If you used a slider, it wouldn’t work. I guess we will all be stuck with a white screen before long. No character. It’s so frustrating.

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          1. Oh, wow! I didn’t realize .org was that pricey. I have 2 blogs on the ,com Premium plan and that’s enough for me. I had the Business plan for a while but couldn’t see spending that much money for it.


  3. Colleen,

    Like you I find inspiration everywhere. I think I’d have to do some uncluttering to make a space for a vision board 😉 Grands went home early today – so I was able to write a post for today.

    I think though I either need to mow or take a nap… ooh… what should I choose? 😀

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  4. Anything that makes you think is good. You never know where they will take you.
    I got the book today! It’s great…and I’m honored that you used so many of my poems. Thanks Colleen! (K)

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    1. Oh, Kerfe! Thank you! I was so mad I couldn’t add your bird drawing! Darn Amazon. This was so fun to write. It was a pleasure to use your poetry as examples. So many will learn from you. ❤️

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        1. Thank you. It’s the Japanese forms that have the most rules and are the hardest for everyone to comprehrend. Even writing them in English, it’s important to honor the original rules of the forms. ❤

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    1. Isn’t that the truth? Even the mundane can be beautiful. The more we write about our observations, the more we learn about embracing those moments of magic that captured us. It’s a form of mindfulness for sure! ❤

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        1. Exactly, it’s the beauty in the mundane that keeps us alive. That first taste of coffee in the morning, snuggling with my kitties, a shared glance with my husband. Typical and normal moments that breathe life into us. ❤

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  5. Great share, Colleen. The vision board is a great idea. I like to use images to spark the imagination, but hadn’t ever considered pulling together a few of them. And nature, of course, offers endless inspiration. 🙂 Happy Writing!

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    1. I just started using Scrivner and they feature a virtual cork board to use for outlining, characters, etc. It’s a great way to visualize your poetry, novel, or even a short story from beginning to end. ❤

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  6. I think that inspiration comes when it wants to. You can wake it up by doing all the things that you mentioned, though. One of my quotes states “I do my best writing when I am running or hurting. Often it is at the same time.” Many of my poems starts with a single line and I don’t usually set out to write a specific form, as the poem tends to tell me when and when not to rhyme or how to organize the lines.


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