You Against the World: the Autobiographical Moment in Poetry
Nonfiction writer Dinty W. Moore says, “It is not what happens to us in our lives that makes us into writers; it is what we make out of what happens to us.” This class will examine several strategies for shaping the autobiographical moment in poetry. We’ll consider how the ordinary becomes sublime, and how the speaker’s private experience can become a powerful experience for the reader as well. This will be a generative workshop. We will write so many poems.
Matthew Olzmann is the author of Constellation Route and two previous collections of poems, Mezzanines and Contradictions in the Design. A recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, MacDowell, and Kundiman, Olzmann's poems have appeared in the New York Times, Best American Poetry, the Pushcart Prizes, New England Review and elsewhere. He teaches at Dartmouth College and in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.