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National Poetry Month Writing Prompt 3/30

National Poetry Month Writing Prompt 3/30

Hello YCA Fam,

April is National Poetry Month, and many poets choose to write one poem each day during April to celebrate the occasion. This year, we are going to be posting a writing prompt every day during April to help you with this writing challenge. Many of these prompts were developed by the YCA Artistic team for our weekly writing workshop, Check The Method. If you write poems to these prompts, share them on social media and tag us (@youngchiauthors on Twitter & @youngchicagoauthors on Instagram).

Here is prompt number 3, which uses a poem by Aaron Samuels and a poem by Angel Nafis



A ghazal is a traditional Middle Eastern form of poetry that uses a repeated end rhyme. 


Words you often use in your poems or in daily conversation
Words you like the sound of
People who are important to you, choose one:
Objects/words/phrases that remind you of this person


Broken Ghazal in the Voice of my brother Jacob by Aaron Samuels

Irrefutable fact / my brother is black jewish

Kink hair & a wide nose / that’s gotta be black, jewish

He said look in the mirror / naked / if it ain’t black—jewish

If we don’t do it to ourselves / first / then they do it to us

Said he loves countin’ stacks / is that black? / jewish?

Said we loves eating chicken cause we black-jewish!

Said, you gotta keep it real / listen to black music

If you wanna keep your teeth / you ain’t allowed to act jewish

And that’s jewish / Night of the broken glass jewish

They’ll beat your face in with a bat / until it’s black. jewish

They raped your great grandma, and that’s a fact, jewish

Say a prayer for the secrets your family keeps, Kaddish

See Aaron, you run / but I learned to attack: jewish

In order to survive, you gotta be black, stupid

Let ‘em tattoo my arm, that’s how I act Jewish

That’s how I be black / but that’s not what you did

Got yourself a “good job,” where nobody’s black / jewish

Cut the slang off your tongue / it’s too black; jewish

And, you never came home / Aaron / where it’s black-jewish

And not coming home / is black


Ghazal for my sister
by Angel Nafis

a little darker than me/ love by the mass sister
pale birthmark on your neck/ with so much sass sister
almost my reflection/ through mirrored glass sister
heels & creased pants/ on the go/ niggas harass my sister
twin bodies/ forked path/ a year estranged/ alas sister
my world is hers if she knew she my last sister
worth unmeasured/ though neither of us can pass sister
white boyfriend curse between your eyes/ but you got class sister
I hold my breath & tongue
pretend I don’t see, “Sonny’s Girl”
tattooed on your ass sister
he cleans his boots on your dreams/ he is an ass sister
(the) black freckle on your nose/ could teach a class sister
I’ma miss you when I go
but return
like mass, sister.


Write a ghazal for someone or something in your life that is important to you.