Overheard: Customer to barista: Surprise me.
Where it took me: When I started to write from this prompt two weeks ago, I ended up with a long poem that I realized was actually two poems. I posted the first one 10 days ago; this is the second. I’m not yet sure it’s finished, but I’m happy with it for now.
Tell me the names of the flowers
that grew in the yard of the house
where you were born.
Remind me what kind of car the neighbours drove,
the brand of cigarette your mother smoked.
Describe your first bike,
the sound of its bell.
Recite the street signs
that marked your path to school.
Show me where your family bought groceries.
Explain how it felt to live on the wrong side of town.
Read me the last page of your favourite book.
Tell me the most horrible thing
that happened to you at summer camp.
Sing me the chorus of your favourite song
from seventh grade, the one you waited to hear on the radio.
Tell me how you got that scar.
Tell me everything that scares you.