NaPoWriMo: Day 22

Poetry prompt: Work with opposites

Many of us get trapped in ordinary, routine thinking which makes it hard to get into a mood of generating fresh and innovative ideas. We routinely get up every morning, brush our teeth, drink coffee, go to work – mostly every day at a same time, using the same route…And to tell you the truth, it can be a creativity killer. What we need is to mix up things a little bit, challenge our habits, language and way of thinking.

We are also aware that we do live in the world comprised of opposites. In Chinese philosophy and especially in Taoism, Universe is seen through the lens of yin and yang energy, male and female, strong and weak, dark and bright, cold and warm. Perceiving reality from the opposite side can give us clue in which direction we need to move forward in order to sort things out.

So for this exercise, as a warm up I propose you pick some ordinary words, something you frequently use in your language and list the opposite meaning of that word; first that comes to your mind.

For example:

sky – bottom, ground

water – dry, yellow, sand

coffee – tea, sweet, cold

work – vacation, free time, relaxation

Do this for a limited time, maybe five to ten minutes. The idea of these warming up exercises is to somehow ‘flush out’ that ordinary thinking, and give room for more ideas to come and encourage creative problem solving.

As a next step you can pick your real problem/project you are working on and apply similar technique. If you repeatedly struggle with something, “turn over” your thinking: instead of trying to develop your best solution, think of the worst thing could happen. How can your project fail? What is the worst scenario? Write every detail of that, using some key words related to your project and answering questions when, how, who, why, how much ext. To make it more fun, write a poem about it.

The blank paper stares at me.
It only not stares: it mocks me.

Whiteness like huge mouth ready
to swallow me.
Mind wages its own war –

Not enough wordly munition to spit,
to fill the blanks of my hollow day.

Pain depletes creative power,
dressing me in new fear: when I
will I write full time again?


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4 Comments

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  1. A fine philosopher-litterateur, Kierkegard, used irony as a reflection tool. Irony plays not only with oposites but with contiguous meanings, with the tendency of thought to jump its tracks in an interesting though somewhat logical way.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. In the warmth of winter:

    She says I love you honey
    Whilst planning to leave
    She says I need more clothes
    As her wardrobes heave
    She says I need more time
    Then falls asleep
    She says I want you to go
    Whilst crushing the heart on her sleeve

    She climbed to the depths to hurtle to the moon
    Shining dimly, stars swim and run, fall and call
    I,m coming for you
    She flicks through the pages modern and ancient
    Saying abracadabra I will spill it
    Seed spread across the sky
    As life starts to die
    She sets a fire
    And a forest grows from pheonix ashes
    She takes a bath
    To fight the rising damp
    Her letter has no stamp

    Hello: she walks away
    Goodbye she waits searching his eyes
    Then once again returns to the
    Way of why,s

    Liked by 1 person

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