The Force of Poetry

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In this eight-week workshop, intermediate and advanced poets will concentrate on reading, writing, and critiquing poetry. Each class session will include a brief discussion of selected contemporary poems, an in-class writing prompt, and workshopping participants’ poems. Specific exercises will be given to free the imagination, and quiet the inner censor. We will explore formal considerations, stylistic choices, and those moments when a poem finds its own voice. By the end of the class, participants will have produced seven original poems and one revision, and will have refined their poetic voice. Please bring 15 copies of a poem you love (not your own) to the first session, as well as 15 copies of one of your own. Note: No meeting February 3 and 17.

About Elizabeth Rees

Elizabeth Rees, M.A. is the author of the poetry collection Every Root a Branch (2014). Three of her four poetry chapbooks are award winners, most recently Tilting Gravity (2009). Twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize, her poems have been widely published in journals, including Partisan Review, Kenyon Review, Southern Review, and Agni. She has taught at Harvard University, Boston University, Macalester College, Howard University, the U.S. Naval Academy, and in the graduate program at Johns Hopkins University, among other schools. A workshop leader at The Writer’s Center since 1989, she has also been a poet-in-the-schools for the Maryland State Arts Council since 1994. She has served as a consulting writer and editor to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian Museums’ Traveling Exhibitions, and PBS.

Teaching style: Liz is relaxed and interactive. She believes students learn best when they are actively involved and when the atmosphere is fun yet rigorous.


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