Get Your Golden Shovel! No. 03 (a collaborative series)

This is an invitation to all of you poets (or potential poets, which is all of you) out there to join me in a new collaborative series I’m calling “Get Your Golden Shovel”. Here is how it works.

Each Saturday in February (as an initial experiment and then I’ll decide whether to continue), will be Golden Shovel Saturday. I’ll post a prompt consisting of one or two lines from a well known poem on Saturday, then we all will create a new poem using the Golden Shovel form and share it with each other. I think it will be very interesting to see how different each of our pieces are despite pulling from the same source of material.

What is the Golden Shovel form, you ask? The Golden Shovel form was created by the poet Terrance Hayes, whose poem “Golden Shovel” (from his 2010 collection Lighthead) is based on Gwendolyn Brooks’ “We Real Cool” which references the phrase “Golden Shovel”. Check out the “rules” here. There is also an example provided.

If you missed the earlier prompts, check out all the contributions from the community in the Week 1 Round-Up and Week 2 Round-Up. Feel free to contribute yours anytime. They were great poem line prompts with lots of creative potential.

Here’s our third prompt. Enjoy!

Golden Shovel No. 03

I cannot rub the strangeness from my sight”

After Apple Picking by Robert Frost (1874-1963)

You can either post on your own blog and link to the prompt post so that we can all see it and further share, include it in the prompt post’s comments section, or post on twitter and tag me (@montyvern).

While there is not a hard deadline, the intention is to share your Golden Shovel poem during the prompt week before the following Golden Shovel Saturday. I’ll target posting my own poem along with some of yours with links in a round-up post ahead of the following week’s prompt.

That’s it! I’m looking forward to seeing what we all come up. It should be a bit challenging, but hopefully fun.

Be well,



  1. This one seems easy enough, but I feel that it will be just as challenging (if not more) as the last one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Monty Vern says:

      I actually had more difficulty with this one than the last. I scratched my first attempt and then worked for a couple hours on a new one to get something that I was happy with.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t. I
    simply cannot.
    No matter how hard I rub
    heart – strangeness –
    the tattoo does not fade away from
    it. Whatever I do you’re always in my

    Sorry for it being late… I have many excuses. None of them are worth mentioning.


    1. Monty Vern says:

      No apology needed. Life happens. Happy to have your words anytime. Lovely.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you. I look forward to reading other submissions!

        Liked by 1 person

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