Out of the quarrel with others we make rhetoric, writes W.B. Yeats. Out of the quarrel with ourselves we make poetry. Poems, therefore, are art objects we make from wrestling with who we were, who we are, who we want to be, and who we can’t even imagine being yet. This generative poetry writing workshop, open to students at all levels, will introduce poems by a diverse range of poets. We will read and analyze these poems to unlock the magic and mystery of their form, content, and meaning. We will learn foundational approaches to prosody, versification, detail, image, figuration, and what John Keats calls negative capability. Most importantly, we will write and revise six original poems that engage with material drawn from our lives, from our triumphs and tragedies, and consider how poetry and the making of a poem can be our revenge on circumstance. Selected poets include: Edgar Kunz, Emily Moore, Aram Saroyan, Solmaz Sharif, Suji Kwock Kim, Rick Barot, Li-Young Lee, Ocean Vuong, Sir Thomas Wyatt, Robert Hayden, Natasha Trethewey, Elizabeth Bishop. Patricia Smith, Sharon Olds, Randall Jarrell, Marie Howe, Linda Gregg, and Jean Valentine.
In summer 2021, this class will be delivered remotely. This interactive workshop includes a mix of group and individual synchronous Zoom sessions and a range of asynchronous reading and writing activities. Courses are embedded within a robust series of public programs (including readings, workshops, and panel discussions) that SWI students will also engage in.
Tentative schedule for synchronous meetings: The group will meet Mondays and Wednesdays, 5:30–7:30pm; workshopping with individual students will take place on Fridays, 5:30–7:30pm.