Repeat After Me

anaphora sThis week’s creative writing prompt takes us back into poetry – and love it or hate it, this will flex your wordsmithing muscles.

Anaphora is a literary term which refers to using repetition to good effect. Shakespeare used it, so we’re in good company. Songwriters can’t stop. Lots of politicians use it too, but we’ll gloss over that one.

It’s all about creating emphasis by using the same words or phrases you’ve already used, at the beginning of a line.

So, sharpen your pencil and write down few words to start a new poem. It can be in any style or form you like, and on any subject, but you must use the same word or phrase over and over to get your message across.

Keep going, it gets easier as we go on, I promise.

What would you like to write about? Stuck for ideas? Perhaps being on the cusp of a new season might be a good start? Perhaps the promise of more lockdown restrictions – until at least April 12th here in Ireland? (Seriously??) Perhaps your feelings of frustration/joy/helplessness/optimism (delete as appropriate)? Perhaps your take on the state of the world? Perhaps your opinions on climate change? Perhaps? Perhaps? You get the idea?

Here are some other random phrases to inspire:

  • I know
  • Where have
  • Show me
  • Who can
  • Take this
  • I remember

See where any of these may take you. Sometimes, all you need to begin a new piece of writing is for someone to suggest a starting point.

Still stuck? Take a look at the first few lines of this poem by Robert Frost and see if this might help?

Acquainted with the Night

I have been one acquainted with the night.

I have walked out in rain — and back in rain.

I have outwalked the furthest city light.


I have looked down the saddest city lane.

I have passed by the watchman on his beat. 

You’re welcome, you’re welcome.

New here? I post a prompt to trigger new creative writing every Wednesday at 5pm, Dublin time. More info here