Say Cheese Poetry Prompt and a Playlist

Happy National Poetry Month, friends! It’s also time for a new poetry prompt and a playlist. You cheddar believe it!

“Poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese,” quipped Chesterton. Apparently, so have songwriters.We dug to the bottom of the cracker barrel to find cheese songs and broadened our possible inclusions to allow for songs not actually about cheese but perhaps by groups like Fromage a Trois.Oh, and yes we looked to foreign sources and found queso, keso, fromage, peynir and, okay, a song about crackers by a Swedish-Japanese singer; the song is technically about fireworks (but we were being expansive, remember?)Listen along, have fun, and say “cheese.”


Poetry Prompt:

Search deep and find your inner cheese. What kind of cheese are you? Whether classic American, a delicate Brie, an aged Manchego, or a stiff-upper-lipped Stilton… Pick just one. Evoke your senses and describe yourself in vibrant, loving words. Explore how this particular type is most like you and why.

Here is a handy website that proclaims to be the world’s greatest cheese resource. Scroll the pages and find yourself. Be the cheese.

Thanks to everyone who participated in last week’s poetry prompt. Here’s part of a poem by Richard that we enjoyed:

This is my favorite coffee,
warm against my hands, and I

in the bistro of my mind,
no words but my own,
swimming like the silent fishes,
stirring waters I cannot see.

—by Richard Maxson

Featured photo by Robert S. Donovan. Creative Commons License via Flickr. Post by Heather Eure.


Sometimes we feature your poems in Every Day Poems, with your permission of course. Thanks for writing with us!

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  1. says

    Call Me Brie

    Too snobby for the processed
    American, and anyway I wasn’t
    born here, though I do have a low
    melting point. Not easily grated
    but easily pushed, bruised, shaped,
    paired with roasted red peppers, red
    onions between the halves of a baguette
    toasted and bias-sliced, of course.
    Readily adapted from savory
    to sweet, gourmet-sprinkled with
    cranberries (red again).

  2. says

    Heather, this theme is so fun that I had to come back to do another! Here it is:

    Limburger Warning

    Her flavor is
    to die for.
    Her scent
    will betray her—
    and you.
    Above all, do not
    her quiche.

  3. says


    There were two always
    in our fridge: Kraft American
    slices, sandwiched
    in cellophane sleeping bags
    and the brick of Velveeta
    in its cardboard crib.
    I liked creasing the edges
    off the first, to make it
    conform to the burger,
    and drawing the slicer
    along the second,
    a wee wiry version
    of Dad’s push mower.
    A square quartered
    could top four Ritz.
    Mom butterflied
    the Oscar Mayers,
    fried in Land O’Lakes,
    their warmth melting
    orange strips laid end to end
    inside toasted IGA buns.
    At Christmas,
    the port wine log
    rolled in almonds
    from one of the aunts
    and sometimes
    the mysteries
    of Philadelphia Cream.

    I live in Ro*Tel country now.

  4. says

    I love to write parodies and this inspired one.

    Grilled Cheese
    (approximating the rhythm of the Toby Keith song, Beer for My Horses)

    Well, I was out in the yard,
    six years old,
    stayin’ in shouting distance,
    doin’ like I was told.
    I was fighting Boston Blackie,
    with a stick and a prayer,
    mama called from the kitchen
    at the top of the stairs, said come
    wash your hands, brush your hair.

    I waited and I waited ‘til
    she shouted again,
    ran in the house and slammed
    the door with a grin.
    I got my hands wet and wiped
    the mud on a towel;
    there was soup on the table
    and my Mom with a scowl, yeah
    I started to howl:

    that grilled cheese is the one thing
    a kid ought to find, sliced from
    corner to corner,
    with a pickle on the side.
    Chicken soup is OK,
    when you’ve been sick with the flu,
    but I been out back with some
    pretty bad dudes, like rustlers,
    robbers and all evil forces,
    with a gun made of wood
    and brooms for my horses.

  5. Marcy says

    The Day they took my Cheese Away

    Tis awful but oh so true,
    The only thing I get to eat
    Is fake, tasteless, looks like
    Rubber too.
    How I miss Cracker Barrel Sharp
    Cheddar sliced thick on a Ritz.
    Golda in white was the
    Perfect sight and left me
    Yearning for more.
    All those little cheese wrapped
    In red rounds that you couldn’t
    Wait to get undone.
    Think about it melted
    Poured on noodles,
    I’m about to become
    About thirty years ago
    My life came to a halt.
    My dairy days that means
    Cheese too!
    Were taken away
    Replaced with fake
    Rubber instead.
    How I miss my cheese
    Most of all, those
    Different flavors,
    I recall them all.
    Tis sad but true,
    It’s a cheese and
    Dairy issue for sure.
    Someone go again and
    Just say “Moo.”

  6. says

    Goat Haiku Trio

    I come from fields of
    Lingering in tall grasses
    Milk as white as eyes


    Crumbled I roll from
    Leaf of spinach and mixed greens
    Melt me I will bubble


    They dress me now in
    Blueberries and cranberries
    Rolled in silk and pearls

  7. says

    The Past

    It’s like the skin
    of Stilton,
    not waxy (except for
    candlelight) like Gouda;

    it is soft,
    the way human skin resists,
    then cedes;

    it’s prone to crumble,
    with a dull knife;

    dirty on the tongue,
    with the right wine,
    a lovely musk with
    tawny port, Evening Songs
    of Chopin, candles,
    and the sound of rain
    on summer leaves;

    but the past is a kelpie,
    feral as moistened blue,
    a ripple in the lake,
    in the shallow of your back,
    borne on a wedge of moonlight,
    where you may drown
    in the carelessness of night;

    taste it slowly,
    then let it go down,
    though memory may leave
    its language on your tongue

  8. says

    Better late than cheddar (ha.) Here’s my dairy-free ditty:

    No dairy, please –
    three words,
    have changed my
    into a repetitive

    No dairy, please –
    that means:
    hold the
    milk & cheese & yogurt
    & ice cream & all things
    made from that
    which was
    from yonder moo cow.

    No dairy, please –
    has been my motto
    nigh on twenty years
    I cry no more cheesy
    belly tears.

  9. says

    Longing for Cheese

    And the women come and go
    speaking of Vermeer.
    They wonder why his women
    yearn for cheese. Take
    the Girl with a Pearl Earring.
    Her full face shows she’s
    no stranger to the fat content
    of good Dutch cheese.
    Mouth partly open, her eyes
    linger on the plate
    just beyond the viewer’s eye,
    mouth watering with
    the taste remembered over time.
    His full-figured Milkmaid
    pours cream and thinks of cheese
    she will add to the crusty
    bread in the basket of her table.
    Even the woman, fingers
    on the virginal’s keyboard,
    in The Music Lesson
    can’t wait to cut the cheese.

  10. says

    Instructions for a Cheesy Poem

    Imagine writing a poem
    that looks like Swiss cheese.
    Will the empty spaces
    before and after every stanza

    always be the words
    you’ll never say to me?
    Think! What metaphor will
    invoke the creaminess

    spread thick on your tongue
    as you eat herb-studded goat
    cheese? Will thin orange shreds
    of cheddar stuck in the grater

    stand for the piles of confetti
    you had to sweep up last week
    in the rain? If the poem stinks,
    how will you avoid the cries,

    “Oh, no, not more limburger!”
    You’ll need to watch for patterns,
    like how you’ll rhyme gouda
    when you mean to praise Buddha.

    If you have to count syllables,
    you’ll need to choose spring
    cheeses—the floral of brin d’amour
    for May’s new love, maybe

    St. Nectaire for its grassy aroma.
    You will not want the poem to go
    on too long. The line you want to end
    with will tell you where to place

    your cheese course and the wine.

  11. Marcy Terwilliger says

    Poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese. G.K. Chesterton

    One would have to disagree after our week on cheese.

    “A New Look At Cheese”

    Who moved my Cheese
    Was a tasteful read.
    Say “Cheese” please, “Smile.”
    Yummy cheddar on a slice of
    Apple so sweet.
    Unless it’s Gwyneth Paltrow’s
    Child to whom we must not
    Don’t forget those
    Wisconsin “Cheeseheads”
    They will banish a huge
    Cheese roll right down
    The hill.
    Did you say, someone
    “Cut the Cheese?”
    Well, that was a full release.
    At last, A Big Cheese.
    Be chalk and cheese makes
    No difference to me.
    Cheeseparing my dear.
    Like wine so tasteful
    With little cheese cubes,
    Mold on cheese, slice that.
    Just go ahead and cheese
    Someone off today.
    All you need is cheese.
    Texture in 2,000 varieties.
    Just follow that cheese.
    Explore, define, cube & slice.
    That one is “Big Cheese Wealthy.”
    Take me to New York for the
    Cheese Cake please.
    Cheese on a mouse trap.
    Who forgot the cheese?
    Hold the cheese.
    Cheese dip.
    The mouse gets the cheese.
    Moon suspended in the sky
    Please tell me why oh why,
    Your mellow yellow look
    Of cheese
    Seems to have many holes
    I see.
    This poem has become just
    too cheesecloth for me.

  12. says

    Saved By Softness

    You must have
    had to have been blue

    in your life, sequestered
    by stares and postures,

    no matter where you were
    in the spaces of living;

    weeks and years, love gone
    from you and time

    to notice how aloneness
    mellows the heart;

    sleep and soft cheeses,
    all the wine you own

    showing you how deep
    caves are made,

    how substance washes away
    to allow a hole to be,

    and how shadow needs
    nothing for itself, but you.

    You lick the velvet
    from your fingers, sip at the edge

    and write Conundrum
    in a poem. Blue finds you

    in your darkest part,
    the alchemist of your body,

    the pit so often referred to,
    where right now the sun is rising.

  13. says

    My niece just said, “LOVE cheese!!! It’s like toilet paper…one of those things I don’t like to run out of.”

    A haiku in her honor:

    cheese is like toilet paper
    a thing not to run out of
    and that’s how I roll


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