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!


I met a couple of strangers early this June and then again during a weekend in August. They are law students from the Czech Republic, working for the summer in Stanley, Idaho at the hotel where I stayed for a weekend writing retreat. We talked about books and the law, and I asked how they had chosen to come here. They picked this summer job, they said, because they admired the mountains.

The Strangers: Martin + Hana

The Word: Hill

The poem I wrote:

When I have a garden
and not a car
I will bring you
flowers. Yes,
I will walk up the hill
holding a story
with your name in it
to make your world
one inch better.

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