The Hybrid Poem
The hybrid text is not new but the word and our regard for the multi-genre approach is relatively new. So, our opening questions are: how to begin and how to make meaningful choices without succumbing to a slap-dash, trendy-looking text? Other questions: What kinds of choices are there? How to even make choices? We will begin each day with example texts for the sake of finding approaches and models. For the hands-on dimension of the class, we will mix up various texts, genres, and media. Students should expect to write new material, to literally rip up your old stuff, and to research in areas that may be unfamiliar (think: the Psittaciformes or the origin of canals or the etymology of the word asylum). Eventually, everyone will lay everything out on the floor to get a picture of progression and cohesion. This is a generative workshop open to all. A good amount of experience in one genre is recommended.
Kimiko Hahn is the author of Foreign Bodies (W.W. Norton, March 2020), and nine other books of poems, including: Brain Fever and Toxic Flora, both prompted by science; The Narrow Road to the Interior, a collection that takes its title from Basho’s famous poetic journal. Her essay on the Japanese hybrid form, "The Zuihitsu and the Toadstool," was published in the American Poetry Review. She teaches in the MFA Program at Queens College, CUNY.