Poetic Spam Or A Path To Inspiration?

Close-Up Of Fridge MagnetsWhere do you find your inspiration?

Some people pull it deep from inside them. Others glean it from life experience.

Or you can find it on the side of the road.

When you are ready to express your creativity how do you do it?

Do you write for two hours everyday or grab your time on the bank line?

Do rules govern your creativity?

In a writing workshop a participant refused to do one of the exercises because she didn’t create that way.

She couldn’t write unless she did it just her way, thus missing the opportunity for exploration.

A schedule can provide you with a successful framework for a writing life or it can make writing dull and ordinary.

Keep to your schedule but shake the tree every now and then and see what kind of fruit hits you on the head.

Inspiration can be found anywhere if you look for it.

Daily I weed through emails, separating out the friendly from the Spam.

This task has frustrated, annoyed and offended me.

One day while visiting the Spam folder to see if friendly mail had been sucked into the void I noticed the subject lines of the offensive mail had some interesting configurations of words.

At first the poetry in them was not be obvious.

Taking the lines and linking them together I was able to create spontaneous poetry.

Thinking outside of how you view the mundane can take you into these new avenues of expression.

Poetry can be found anywhere if you aren’t limited by what you think it should be.

Just by looking at what before was annoying became an experiment in creativity that I might have missed.

We all have hidden or wide-open prejudices about what is good art, writing, or performing.

We have set ideas about how our own art should be created.

Sometimes the most free spirited artist can be the one that is the most restricted never allowing for a different point of view about what is good.

Is your idea of good art limited to the masters like Da Vinci or Rembrandt?

Do you find avant-garde theater is the only true theater?

Someone’s great art may be a velvet Elvis portrait or dogs playing poker.

Is your point of view limiting?

Open your eyes to new possibilities and you may discover inspiration is everywhere.

The trees speak to you, the sky paints you colors the earth opens up her secrets.

The idea is take what you normally do and change it around a little.

Make life an adventure and be the grand master explorer of all the riches possible to you.

Found Poetry is the rearrangement of words or phrases taken randomly from other sources (example: clipped newspaper headlines, bits of advertising copy, handwritten cards pulled from a hat) in a manner that gives the rearranged words a completely new meaning.

Creative Writing Prompts

Be creative and read your own Spam mail subject lines (please don’t open them – an adventure in virus-dom is not the goal).

See if any of the words or lines interests you.

Or using my Spam email subject lines see if you can create some poetry or even a tiny story out of them.

A swinish
Guys, feel eighteen again!
Stop fruit down
Small cap promo mover alert
Saleslady knee hole
Finally there’s a way
Culprit erodible
Hot women doing crazy things
Sad dependent spoon
Authority relieve your strongest pain light
Spumoni taxi
Muscle bound guys become the biggest bottoms
while pole in wall is glory whole
Aching reckon apollonian declarator workplace civic

My Sample Poems

Web-tribution: finding words all around

Muscle bound guys become the biggest bottoms
Underbooked and underwitholding
Take spumoni taxi


Sad dependent spoon
Culprit erodible
Guys feel eighteen again
Finally, there’s a way!


Saleslady knee hole
A swinish
Stop fruit down
Lane of careful sliding
Depends on the knee

Are these brilliant poems? Not really.

The point is to look for inspiration in unexpected ways and be willing to experiment and fail.

Be willing to create bad writing. On the other side could be something brilliant.

In her essay Bad Writing, Julia Cameron gives us writers the task of going out and buying the tabloids we usually read secretively on the supermarket line.

Julia suggests looking over some of favorite titles and creating your own “tabloid” story.

“Alien baby is my love child”, “8,000 year old man found buried alive in desert”, “Writer’s fear stepping out of the ordinary”, you get the idea.

Have fun with it. Create outrageous tales.

If you do it with abandon and a sense of fun you should find you are energized and want to return to your work.

Look for ways to expand how you create.

If you paint try coloring with regular crayons or making collages out of found pictures.

Create poetry by cutting words out of magazines. Create poetry with found pictures.

Creating should be deep, fun, joyous, exciting, and enlivening.

Create with your arms wide open and allow inspiration to meet you in all places.

Guest Author: Sandra Lee Schubert

Sandra Lee Schubert is an interfaith minister, writer and founder of Wild Woman Ministries and Wild Woman Network a forum to explore and express creativity and spirituality. 

She also leads workshops and facilitates a popular writing program called the Wild Angels at the historic Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. 

Check out her subscription e-course – Writing for Life: Creating a Story of Your Own!

Email Sandra at wwn@wildwomannetwork.com, or sign up for her newsletter Wild Woman Network.

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