What is more deeply entangled in the genealogy of the poem than love? Poet Eileen Myles writes that the love poem is where all of poet’s best lines should gather. Poet Truong Tran talks about love as a public word, one too multifarious in meaning to mean anything at all. Subjectivity, emotion, & sentimentality have often given poetry a bad name; but poets have long been driven to the page by passion—both real & imagined—with striking results, in part because love is a kind of attention that bends itself into the most benign corners of our daily lives (think: “liking” things on Facebook) & cracks open versions of ourselves, making the world unfamiliar & new.
This one-week intensive workshop will consider more closely the many facets of desire & the part the poet can play as both love & beloved alike. Daily prompts will ask you to engage in mythmaking, manifestos, & the murky question Anne Carson poses in Eros the Bittersweet: can desire persist if desire is fulfilled? Through a series of exercises & experiments, we will write poems that respond to love via free verse & form—the ode, the prayer, the sonnet, the epistle, repetition as obsession—& together we will use love as a lens through which to read a diversity of poets whose work might not have ever fallen under the category before.
In addition to submitting work, you will be expected to comment on 1-2 of your classmates’ experiments daily. At the end of the course, I will conduct one-on-one conversations with each student via email to discuss further revisions and how to move forward.
Meg Day is the 2015-2016 recipient of the Amy Lowell Poetry Travelling Scholarship, a 2013 recipient of an NEA Fellowship in Poetry, and the author of Last Psalm at Sea Level (Barrow Street 2014), winner of the Barrow Street Poetry Prize and the Publishing Triangle’s Audre Lorde Award. Day is Assistant Professor of English & Creative Writing at Franklin & Marshall College and lives in Lancaster, PA