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!


Writers love writers. Of course. At the Boise Downtown Farmer’s Market, I met Susan, writer and tea-maker, who offered samples of the teas she had blended. “Isn’t there a link,” she wondered aloud, “between people who love to write and people who love to drink tea?”

The Stranger: Susan

The Word: Peace

The poem I wrote:

Though the kids
cleaned it up,
the mother started
the food fight:
boy pinched girl
so with sound
aim I threw fried
tofu; it bonked
off his forehead.
There will be peace
among us even
for those who
started it, even
for those who carry
guilt’s burden.

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