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Poetry Workshop: Kiss Me, We're Dying: Exploring a Poetics of Intimacy & Aversion, in three parts
The Word Barn
Exeter, NH
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Poetry Workshop: Kiss Me, We're Dying: Exploring a Poetics of Intimacy & Aversion, in three parts

Join us for this all-day poetry workshop
(10-5, with a 45-min. lunch break and a short afternoon break)
with Poet Jen Steinorth!

Part 1.  The political begins in intimacy.  Forrest Gander, Be With.

In the first part of this class we will examine the integration of the intimate with the repellentexamining poems that draw us into congress with another, while simultaneously affronting us with what causes us to avert our eyes.  We will observe such dynamic polarity and its effects in the work of Solmaz Sharif, Jan Beatty, Frank Bidart, Sylvia Plath & othersunpacking the postures and techniques by which engagement with the abhorrent calls us into deeper congress with ourselves and others. The session will close with several writing exercises designed to help us penetrate boundaries and enter hot uncomfortable material.

Part 2.  Much has been declared about the musicality of poetry.  Not so much about the physicality.   C.D. Wright, Cooling Time.

In part 2, we will examine poems whose visual organization is architectural, who depend on open spacea virtual sky, field, stage across which to leap-- who attend the movement of the eye across the page, screen, landscape of the poem, and through careful orchestration between word and word and open space, create dwellings whose empty corridors, as well as the articulate furniture, mean to be inhabited, haunted.  This session will close with writing exercises designed to explore visual structure and use of space.  Participants may wish to bring with them some unrealized drafts to play with, though text generated in the first part of the workshop can also be used for these exercises.  

Part 3.   Much has been written about Erasure poetry in the last decade, particularly in the Trump-era.   But what is the point of constraining oneself to someone elses words?  What can be achieved through Erasure that cannot be achieved in conventional generation?  Is an erasure a dialogue more complex than that between reader and writer, and if so, how?  In this part we will examine some excerpts of book length erasures. Participants may wish to bring a non-literary text (reference book, government document, manual) with which to play.

Jennifer Sperry Steinorth is a poet, educator, interdisciplinary artist, and licensed builder. Her poetry has appeared in Alaska Quarterly, Beloit Poetry Journal, The Colorado Review, jubilat, Michigan Quarterly Review, Mid-American Review, New Ohio Review, Poetry Northwest, Quarterly West and elsewhere. She has received grants from the Sewanee Writers Conference, The Vermont Studio Center, and Warren Wilson College where she received her MFA in poetry. Her first full-length book, A Wake with Nine Shades, a finalist for the Hillary Gravendyke prize, the Barrow Street Prize and Press 53 open read, is forthcoming from Texas Review Press in autumn of 2019. A hybrid text of visual poetry/erasure is forthcoming from TRP, Spring of 2021.

Steinorth began her artistic life as a dancer.  She studied and performed with the Houston Ballet, the School of the Pennsylvania Ballet, and Interlochen Arts Academy.  For ten years she was president and lead designer for a design-build construction company specializing in environmentally-responsible homes; she continues work as a designer and consultant.   Recently she has become engaged in book arts and other hybrid forms that permit explorations at the intersections of language, architecture and visual arts. She lives with her husband and two sons in northern Michigan and teaches at Northwestern Michigan College and elsewhere.


The Word Barn (View)
66 Newfields Road
Exeter, NH 03833
United States


Arts > Literary

Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: No


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