Poem Writing Game

I learned this game from my friend Darcy. Basically, you write out a set of 10 constraints and give yourself 2 min to respond to each – write them out, toss them in a pile, draw one at random, start the timer, write, repeat.

Just like the songwriting game, the goal is to get yourself out of your head. You can use this as a warm-up, or, if you like what you come up with, shape it up into a proper poem.

I’ve loaded this up to generate a set of constraints from the ones I’ve used over the past few months. Every time you refresh the page you should see a different combination. Feel free to use these or create your own!


  1. write 2 lines in iambic pentameter
  2. describe the feeling of a color you see
  3. describe waiting using smells
  4. open your Bible, drop your finger, and use that word
  5. use a random place (google "random place generator") and a random topic from wikipedia
  6. write 2 lines in iambic pentameter
  7. write in 7,6,7,6
  8. describe the feeling of a color you see
  9. describe the texture of a color
  10. use a plant, a shape and a #

I’d love to hear what you come up with – either ideas for constraints or what you create. Drop me a line or comment here to share!