Building Joy in the World, for NaPoWriMo 2022, Day 27 and Prompts


Building Joy in the World

If I forgo mere toil and strife
for a more playful sort of life,

and live this playful sort of life
to the accompaniment of fife,

of fife and whistle, flute and drum,
my narrow life might expand some.

Expand from shard to full-blown bowl,
filled to its edges with more soul

’til edges of my soul have filled
the bowl from which it now has spilled.

Spilled out to change the world it touches,
wrested from my lonely clutches.

Freed from their clutch, to build a life
that has transcended mere toil and strife

Prompt words today are narrow, forgo, playful, shard and touch. This poem is also written to fulfill the NaPoWriMo2022  day 27 prompt to write a “Duplex”—a 14 line poem of seven two-line stanzas where the second line of the first stanza is echoed by (but not identical to) the first line of the second stanza, the second line of the second stanza is echoed by (but not identical to) the first line of the third stanza, and so on. Then the last line should be the same as the first line of the poem. Image by Joanna Kosinska on Unsplash.

21 thoughts on “Building Joy in the World, for NaPoWriMo 2022, Day 27 and Prompts

      1. Jane Dougherty

        I’ve never understood this thing for calling unrhymed, unmetred poems by classical names either. Just because it has 14 lines doesn’t mean it’s a sonnet, but then so much has become ‘what I say it is’.


        1. lifelessons Post author

          Amen. As a “reformed” English teacher I still want the classical forms to remain unchanged. If you want to change it, call it by another name. “Me and her are going to the store,” also grates.


          1. Jane Dougherty

            So many things set my teeth on edge when written by people who purport to be poets or writers. If you can’t conjugate the verb to lie, I think you should use a different verb, for example.
            Yesterday on the radio I heard an American diplomat talking about the new front opening in Transnistria, and using the bizarre word, ‘rattle-sabres’. I assume he was talking about sabre-rattling. I wonder what he thinks a rattle-sabre looks like?


  1. serendippitysays

    I think your duplex turned out admirably, Judy. I know I need more play in my life (besides writing playful poems!). I’m reminded of this quote: “The opposite of play is not work. It’s depression.” (Brian Sutton-Smith) Take care, Stephanie



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