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!


On an airplane ride to visit my grandfather for his 100th birthday, I sat next to a joyful great-grandmother who had butterflies on her necklace, purse, and cane. We talked for much of the flight and she held my baby guy and showed him the view out the window. She was on her way back from a tour de children and grandchildren (Idaho for a weekend, Denver for a football game).

The Stranger: Denise

Her Word: Fabulous

The poem I wrote:

The climb up
any beanstalk
makes the more
fabulous story,
but we are most
human on the way
down: we can’t
help but fear
the clouds,
the earth below,
the fall.

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