Writing Poems that Don’t Fit
In her four-week workshop, Daisy Fried will guide you as you formulate what your poems want to be and how you fit into your work. With a goal of helping you clarify your themes and focusing on your own voice, this workshop is designed to teach you new ways to generate poems that truly reflect your individual style.
Does it sometimes seem as if the poetry world is divided into camps determined to prove that the other camps have nothing to offer? And where do you fit in? This workshop recognizes that the best poetry often doesn’t fit into any stylistic mode, and uses what techniques it needs as it finds them. You’ll generate new poems and revise your work for supportive, frank, detailed critique by the instructor and group, and you’ll read and discuss relevant work by modern and contemporary poets, starting with the A-List–Alice Oswald, Anne Winters, Anne Carson and Ange Mlinko–with the goal of failing, wonderfully, to fit in. In place of traditional formal prompts, we’ll consider—in magpie spirit, and in hopes of embracing confusion as a way to work towards clarity—strategic, formal and thematic questions designed to provide focus but leave most choices up to you. And while we will likely make plenty of suggestions for specific edits as you revise, the most important revision questions will be: “Who are you? Who do you want to be? What do you want your poems to be?” Poets at any level who find these questions engaging are welcome.
Daisy Fried’s book of “versions and aversions” of the 19th C. French poet, Charles Baudelaire, will be published by Flood Editions in 2022. She is also the author of three other books of poems: My Brother is Getting Arrested Again, Women’s Poetry: Poems and Advice, and She Didn’t Mean to Do It. A past Guggenheim, Hodder and Pew Fellow in poetry, she is a member of the faculty of the Warren Wilson MFA Program for writers, and at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where she lives.