The Poetry of Memory: A Reading and Writing Workshop
Unlike Fry, we will explore the tandem satisfactions of reading as well as writing poems. Frances Mayes calls attention to that dual emphasis: “Reading a fine poem makes me rediscover the freshness of creation. Writing a poem doubles, triples the experience that initiated it…. Poems give you the lives of others and then circle in on your own inner world.”
We will note the ways poets use various forms and techniques to shape and distill memories for an audience. Each meeting also will include a brief writing exercise, taking off from the substance, form, or technique of a model poem. Oral sharing will model ways to begin writing, and highlight strategies for drafting and revising poems.
Keeping the poetry of memory as its center, out-of-class exercises will include reading and writing, and, depending on the group’s preference, sharing of drafts online. Print and online resources for reading and writing poems, such as the books whose introductions are quoted above, will be available.
Stephen Fry, a British novelist and actor, wrote The Ode Less Traveled: Unlocking the Poet Within. Frances Mayes, of Under the Tuscan Sun fame, also wrote The Discovery of Poetry: A Field Guide to Reading and Writing Poems.
BUTTERFIELD ROOM, WASCH CENTER | $125