Prompt and Inspiration: Philip Schultz, “What I Like and Don’t Like…”

There’s nothing better for inspiration than finding a poem that inspires you to try something new. I love this poem; it’s simple, plain and sometimes surprising. It makes me think about what I like and don’t like and how some of those things are the same as Philip Schultz says….

What I Like and Don’t Like
by Philip Schultz

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I like to say hello and goodbye.
I like to hug but not shake hands.
I prefer to wave or nod. I enjoy
the company of strangers pushed
together in elevators or subways.
I like talking to cab drivers
but not receptionists. I like
not knowing what to say.
I like talking to people I know
but care nothing about. I like
inviting anyone anywhere.
I like hearing my opinions
tumble out of my mouth
like toddlers tied together
while crossing the street,
trusting they won’t be squashed
by fate. I like greeting-card clichés
but not dressing up or down.
I like being appropriate
but not all the time.
I could continue with more examples
but I’d rather give too few
than too many. The thought
of no one listening anymore-
I like that least of all.

“What I Like and Don’t Like” by Philip Schultz from Failure. © Harcourt, 2007.

So, do you like the idea of writing your own “What I Like and Don’t Like” poem/essay/meditation/play? I hope so! Go for it, and share it here!

If you’d like support as well as inspiration and prompts, contact me now — I’m a writing coach that helps you get your work done your way. My services include regular coaching to keep you and your project on target, and editing, developmental, manuscript evaluation, and marketing services to help you get it out into the world.


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