Posted by: Nice Melons | July 9, 2008

Mad Lib? Or instant poetry? You decide.

Hmmm… I like this.  I found it on Turning Into the Slide, and I’m such a word nerd that I can play with this kind of stuff for hours.

So, here’s the deal. 

Fill in the blanks to create your own poem. Peek at the completed ones and fiddle with your own as necessary. Feel free to use some elements from the examples. Included is the original excerpt by Rilke, Rob Brezsny’s example, and a few of my own. The more specific you are, the better your results will be. He cues readers to “fantasize about what you’re circling around and what force of nature you might be.”

If you try this, please either leave your poem or a link to it… and go check out The Other Ivy.
1. Something greater than the self/inspiring/sacred:______________

2. A mythic place or object:___________________

3. Measurement of time:__________________

4. Creature or person/vocation:____________________

5. Weather: _________________________

6. Creative act:_______________________

Now, fill in your answers.

I am circling around ______1_______, around the _______2______, and I have been circling for __________3____________, and I still don’t know if I am a _____4______, or a _____5_______, or a _______6_______. 

Here are two of mine:

I am circling around the lotus, around Avalon, and I have been circling since the beginning of memory, and I still don’t know if I am a goddess, a zephyr, or a heart-song.

I am circling around my innermost heart, around Vahalla, and I have been circling since the dawn of thought, and I still don’t know if I am a Boddhisava, a thunderstorm, or a wild improvisation.

 Rob Brezny’s version:

I am circling around love, around the throbbing hum, and I have been circling for thousands of days, and I still don’t know if I am a wounded saint, or a rainy dawn, or a creation story.

The original version:

I am circling around God, around the ancient tower, and I have been circling for a thousand years, and I still don’t know if I am a falcon, or a storm, or a great song.

– Excerpt from “The Seeker,” a poem by Rilke in his Book of Hours (translated by Robert Bly)








  1. I’m happy to see this making its way around the Internet. I really enjoyed reading your versions. It’s hard to stop after doing one (for some of us). He really chose a great passage. It seems to lend itself to a variety of wonderful experiments. Thanks for the mention.

  2. Melons, I see you’ve met Ivy! She’s quite excellent, isn’t she?

    You seem to have met up with all my buds from different internet groups. Isn’t that awesome? How’d you find this motley crew anyway?

  3. Yow! Hi Wanda. Yeppers, I did stumble upon Mis Ivy. She is indeed da bomb! 😀

  4. I can’t think of anything to fill in the blanks. I’ll have to come back to this.

    Hey, Wanders!

  5. […] poem by The Deist My blog peep Melon Girl, found this from another blogger and posted her results. This is quasi meme-ish and so I thought I’d give it a whirl. I read her poem a couple of […]

  6. I did this the other day, but never posted it, same with a comment, my internet went wacky. I really like your versions. 😀

  7. Wanda, I forgot to answer you about the motley crew. All I can say is I stumbled upon everyone through a link from someone else’s blog. It’s been a veritable trail of breadcrumbs, I guess.

    Hi Anners!

    Jennyfer, my internet goes wacky all the time. Or it may just be me who is wacky. Anyway, I am glad you did this. Tis fun, no?

    Oooh, Jules, I am so going to check out your poem.

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