If you’ve been following my blog for the last few years, you may have noticed my regular section, “Quirk of the Month,” where I feature toys, collectibles, and souvenirs I’ve amassed in my travels. They’re all part of my de-stressing hobbies. To calm my nerves when I’m anxious, distract myself when I’m stressed, or help with writer’s block, I turn to these little knick-knacks.
My first quirk of 2017 is something I’ve been wanting to purchase since I first saw it on the Instagram posts of my fellow journalists. Magnetic Poetry is a box of magnetic word tiles you can display on your fridge, locker, or any steel surface. You arrange the words into phrases and lines as you please, whether childish or philosophical. It doesn’t matter if you come up with complete gibberish or an award-winning poem.
The story behind Magnetic Poetry is serendipitous. In 1993, aspiring songwriter Dave Kapell was suffering from writer’s block, so he did what his idol David Bowie would do—write down words on little pieces of paper and rearrange them for inspiration. Then he sneezed. The words flew around the room. He glued the words to pieces of magnets and stuck them to a pizza tin. The rest is history. [Read the full story here.]
When it became a hit in bookstores and gift shops, Magnetic Poetry expanded to different themes and subcategories, like sports, coffee, and even zodiac signs.
Last Christmas, I finally got my first basic Magnetic Poetry Kit (Thanks, Mother Cherry!). They were right about this box of random words—it’s addicting! You may compose a haiku, cryptic messages, rants, and lyrics. Leave all the words and syllables on the fridge or pick them from a box and let your creative juices run wild.
There’s also an online community of Magnetic Poetry users who share photos of their compositions. Now excuse me while I hang out by my kitchen fridge.
January 24, 2017 Photos by KateWasHere. Additional photo (shop display) from Magnetic Poetry’s FB page.