“Poetry,” writes Yusef Komunyakaa in his essay collection Blue Notes, “is an act of meditation and improvisation. And need is the motor that propels the words down the silent white space.” In this workshop, participants will consider various perspectives on the revision process and explore strategies for re-drafting poems-in-progress. While this class is open to poets of all levels of experience, those who stand to gain the most are those who’ve already amassed a sizeable body of work – poems, drafts, notes – with which they are, for the most part, dissatisfied and eager to improve. It is imperative that participants come with an open mind and a willingness to surprise themselves.
John Murillo is the author of the poetry collections Up Jump the Boogie (Four Way Books 2020; Cypher 2010), finalist for both the Kate Tufts Discovery Award and the Pen Open Book Award, and Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry (Four Way 2020), winner of the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and the Poetry Society of Virginia’s North American Book Award, and finalist for the PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry and the NAACP Image Award. His many honors include the Four Quartets Prize from the T.S. Eliot Foundation and the Poetry Society of America, two Larry Neal Writers Awards, a pair of Pushcart Prizes, the J Howard and Barbara MJ Wood Prize from the Poetry Foundation, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Bread Loaf Writers Conference, Fine Arts Work Center, Cave Canem, and the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. Recently, his poems appeared in American Poetry Review, Poetry, and Best American Poetry 2017, 2019, and 2020. He is an Associate Professor of English at Wesleyan University.