I've had this problem too. I learned when I had a brainstorm for lyrics, not to force them. If I start a song with some great lyrics and reach a dead end, I'll put them aside for a while until something clicks that adds life to the theme of the piece.
Almost invariably, the first verse I write is not the first verse of the song.
The words that come to me initially are usually a distillation of what the song is about. The thrust of the song.
I don't like to lay out all the cards in the first verse, so what I'll do is use those song-defining lyrics at a more strategic "climax" point (like third verse before the last chorus, or whatever. Depends on the structure of the song.) And for the first verse I'll write sort of a prologue. Something that leads to, but doesn't totally give up, what the song is about.
So, in my mind, the first verse of the song doesn't necessarily need to be as strong as what you got in that initial Moment of Inspiration. Knowaddamean?
This may not have anything to do with what you're talking about, but I'm drunk and I'm on a roll!
I occassionally have that problem too. Thing is, i want something to come through stronger than the chorus for my second verse, which is usually pretty difficult. SO I tried writing really long first verses, then cutting them in half and inserting a chorus as a divider. Works really wel for Verse Chorus verse chorus bridge chorus out type of songs.
Chepney: Being drunk seems to do well by you! I'm down with your logic, C.
Walter, something I've found often paliates the sucky-yucky second-verse syndrome is to change perspective entirely. For instance, if you start in the third person, kick into first of second person in the second verse. It helps me mix things up, keeps 'em fresh...
Or if you were narrating a scene in the first verse, start off another scene in the second, converging the two scenes in the bridge. Get my drift? Or am I just drifting off again?!! Drunk, you say? Hmmm. Perhaps not such a bad idea...