Prompted To

Nikki Donadio

Nikki is a graduate of the Humber School for Writers and holds degrees in English and Adult Education. She currently lives in Newmarket, Ontario and is an MA candidate in Creative Writing at the University of Gloucestershire. You can find her poetry in ‘Her Heart Poetry’ and ‘Borealis’. Her short fiction is available for a read in ‘Plenitude Magazine’ and ‘Gertrude Press’, and she guest blogs for the Writers’ Community of York Region.

Nikki’s intention with “Prompted To” was to explore landscapes both familiar and imagined and to provoke environments for introspection, humour, and wile. Catapulting between here and not here, each poem was prompt-inspired and the poems are linked by the central themes of adoration and retrospect.


I’m a lapsed little spoon, I admit. The last crumb of my reticence orbits
our kitchenette, your cheeks turn ham-pink.

a reluctant version of me adored
the way your hair shone pyrite in the sun
soaking through the drapes, the carpal of light
your watch threw against the
drawings traced over with parchment.

The link between then and now is through
appliance of forgetfulness, a quarter’s
worth, easy to smudge, easy as kohl.

Our first draft is not stencil-drawn but drawn freely.

Office Park, Keele and 7

Past the Pakistani Consulate,
graze cigarette butts like
a flock unshepherded.
White and orange fleece wander in
listless puddles, fatten with rain.
At the back of the plaza
the viburnum with its
corroded red petals
snarls its arthritic,
clipped-back branches over
the cast concrete planter.

Raindrops cling and swell,
beg permission to fall
and paint the hardscaping
below an even deeper grey —
a grey you can suck in while
trains in the yard
complain and upstairs
my inbox floods.

And the snails, darling antennae,
whelk like a honey-coloured corduroy,
hang out, too.

Peach Fuzzy

I went to see Kaiju Goatee my fave

indie band and greet them with squishy fists

covered in peach meal handfuls of yorange

peach flesh and a badger in a silk house coat

licks peach juice from my wrist declaring it

unfit for badger consumption. Meanwhile

Mom’s wearing a blue grey smokerchief

made of Belmont Milds and coos to me time

for bed Nik go count sheep. So I lay

on the club floor with peach mush pillows

and count lambs iambic lambs who hop

and bleat ba-AAH ba-AAH their black fleece clipped

into shapes of X’s or slashes while

I sup one last sip of peach sweetened night.