Introducing Poetry Poker

Hi there ladies and gentlemen. If you are following this blog regularly, you probably know me as the man behind the curtain, the dude who created Unbound Northwest as a part of Unbound Media. a company that focuses on one thing: writing.

While the website also focuses on business, health, and other topics, we at Unbound Media write first and foremost. We write for other websites, we write for blogs, and we write for ourselves. From fiction to non-fiction, technical to ghost writing, we write every day. As a result of all of that writing, we sometimes, just for fun or as an exercise, write poetry.

So when I was in Utah at LTUE and met Christine Haggerty, a writer and teacher (black belt and bartender too, just so I don’t neglect anything), I was inspired. The first time we met was when she was on a panel about poetry, and some of the things she said really connected with me. Then, I met her later at an autograph party, and she showed me decks of cards for something called Poetry Poker.

How it Works

Here is how it works. In the game, each player is dealt five cards, all with words on them. They then must write a poem containing those five words.

  • The words may be altered, such as swim to swimming to fit the poem.
  • Words cannot be substituted, like “knight” for “night”, to create the poem.
  • The player can (typically) exchange one to all five cards once per deal.
  • Players must read their poem aloud after each round.
  • Players may not apologize for their poetry. Like “this isn’t very good, but here goes.”

There are variations, like Texas Hold ’Em, where three shared cards are dealt, the players each get two cards, neither of which can be exchanged, and then they are dealt one final card, which must be the title of the poem.

This game can be even more challenging by insisting that one round be a continuation of a previous poem.

Ready Player One

So what does this have to do with Unbound Northwest? Well, we are going to take one day each week, and play a hand of poetry poker. Here is how we are going to do it.

One or more writers on our staff, locally, or who want to participate will be dealt a hand, and create a poem or two with the words we have been dealt.

This is an audience participation game: you can add your own poem in the comments, and comment on the poem the author(s) created.

There will be some social media editions on both Facebook and Twitter, where you can get dealt your own hand via private message, and then create and share your own poem. If you are dealt a hand, you must share your poem.

We will even have some Texas Hold ’Em Days were we give you a few choices of titles and a few card sets to work with.

Come Join Us! To start with, we are going to try Monday mornings for Poetry Poker day! Will you come an join us? Share your poetry talent, flex your literary and writing muscles, and let’s see if we can have some fun with this one.

Originally published at Unbound Northwest.