Poetry for Strangers is about finding inspiration in community, in people, in the chance encounters of everyday life. PFS suggests that every person can be a “muse” of a poem. Every week of this year I will ask a stranger for a single word and then write a poem inspired by the word. I invite you to do the same.

Share your poem on this week’s word!


Dear everybody,

Week three and the words keep coming…and your poems do too! Thank you for writing and sharing them.

The stranger: I met Seiya, age eleven and quadrilingual, when he came for tea with his mother, my new friend. He settled right down onto my sofa, reading the Oxford English Dictionary and calling out unusual words.

His word: Aardvark

The poem I wrote:

Waiting for spring is an uneasy proposition.
There is no patience in these winter months
no matter how we pretend. We hug the earth
like aardvarks, waiting for something green,
praying for what we already know: that
if you root deep enough under the earth
and under the snow, you’ll find spring.

The Challenge: Do you have a poem in you on this word? Write one here.