Friday, December 30, 2022

Playing with AI Poetry

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Patricia at Reverie for Roundup.

So, I've been hearing so much about art that can be created using AI, that I decided I wanted to play around some with poetry. More specifically, I wanted to know: Can ChatGPT write a decent poem?

Here's what I found out:


When I typed in, "Poem about horses," here's the poem that was generated in oh, about five seconds:

Horses, majestic beasts of grace and might, 

Their manes flowing in the wind, a beautiful sight.

With hooves pounding the earth, they run with wild abandon, 

Their powerful muscles rippling, a sight to expand on.

Their eyes, intelligent and wise, seem to look right through you, 

As if they know your secrets, and all that you do.

They are creatures of the wild, yet also tamed by man, 

Loyal companions, and a joy to understand.

So here's a little poem, to honor these fine steeds, 

May they always run free, and fulfill all their needs., the AI program thinks poems should rhyme, yes? And it included some basic facts about horses, which is nice... though the poem itself is kinda clunky (as many forced-to-rhyme poems are). I can see a middle school student turning this in, can't you?

Since I've been writing a lot of haiku lately, I decided to try, "haiku about the new year." After I got the first response, I hit the "regenerate" button, just to see what would happen. The results reveal one of the weaknesses of AI poetry. Read on!

Haiku #1:

Fresh start, new year

Hope and possibility bloom

Leaves of the future

Haiku #2:

A new year begins

Fresh starts, new hopes and dreams

Leaves of the past fade

Haiku #3:

Fresh start, new year's dawn

Resolutions, hope, and renewal

Leaves of the past turn

Haiku #4:

Fresh year, new start

Leaves of the past fall away

Embrace the unknown

Okay. What's up with the "leaves?" Is this the only nature image that AI can find to fit my search requirements?  Also, each one includes rather mundane words like, "fresh" "year"  "new" "start" "hope" "past"... 

I do love the message of Haiku #4. Yes, language is expected, but it works. 

Which is your favorite?

So, my conclusions are these

1. Poetry still needs humans.
2. If a poet is feeling stuck, AI might be a useful tool to get the creative juices flowing. 

3. One way to "check" on the uniqueness of our own poems might be to run an AI chat like this one. If our poem-draft has these messages or these particular words, we might need to dig a bit deeper.

And now, I give you my final ArtSpeak: Animals poem! This has been such a fun series to work on. 

I started the year writing poems about virtues, and how they might be represented by animals. 

I discovered the Picasso line drawings in summer, and that kept me going for a while. 

These last weeks have taken on an additional "red," theme, which is something I keep coming back to.... apparently I am really drawn to art that features red! 

More than half the poems I wrote were haiku (not my intention, just something that happened)! Today's poem is is both red and a haiku...and is how I'm feeling as we move into the new year. Yay!

the sky is burning
crows carry dreams on their wings
it's enough

-Irene Latham

Thank you for following along. I've very excited to see what adventures 2023 brings for all of us! xo


  1. The AI experiment is fascinating, Irene! I do think it's funny that -- like a middle school-er, it had a hard time letting go of the image. #4 was my favorite: "embrace the unknown" :)

    Thank you for your artspeak animal poems this year! Happy New Year!

  2. Interesting experiment. Individual lines grabbed me, like "embrace the unknown" and "leaves of the past turn," but I agree that you still need the human touch for something novel. Thank you for the gifts of all your wonderful poetry this year, Irene. I love learning from and creating with you. Happy New Year!

  3. Oh, we're both "crow"ing today, Irene. I've played a bit with ChatGPT to see what it does. I agree it can be an interesting tool for sparking ideas, checking your own level of creativity, getting some thoughts for logical structures (for nf), etc. I feel sorry for teachers who have to grade writing, though. It just got a gazillion times more difficult, and I think most writing will have to take place at least partially IN the classroom. Anyway, I've really enjoyed your animal ArtSpeak year! Thanks, and Happy New Year!

  4. The leaves are fascinating. Leaves of the future could be its own poem (and reminds me of a Chinese drama where each person's fate is stored on a leaf of a special tree.)

  5. I'm fascinated by the double-edged appearance of crows today, Irene and Laura! And also, Irene, very interested in the idea that " One way to "check" on the uniqueness of our own poems might be to run an AI chat like this one. If our poem-draft has these messages or these particular words, we might need to dig a bit deeper." That is a very clever use of the tool indeed!

  6. There is so much talk lately about AI, evidently a spurt of possibilities & sometimes cheating is discussed. I like the idea of 'leaves', intrigued that it kept them, & I like no. 1, 'leaves of the future' & then the final one, "embrace the unknown". It is intriguing, isn't it? I will miss your artspeak poems all the year, Irene. They have brought lovely images, & the Picasso sketches, wow! This one, with my favorite color red & crows, yes, enough! I posted about crows yesterday, see them often around here. Happy, Happy New Year!

  7. Fascinating experiment with the AI poetry. It makes me wonder from the reader's of the things I like about poetry is that I get that AHH or OH feeling when I read about the way someone else looks at the world and I feel a connection. Not sure I'd feel that connection to a computer. Fascinating! Happy New Year!

  8. Oooh, I think your question of "What's up with the leaves?" is such a good starting point--a prompt indirectly generated by AI. Very interesting poetry experiments.


Your thoughts?