Hearing Voices: Using Persona in Poetry

Imagine that it’s your wedding day, and at the reception your grandmother walks up to you, looks you in eye, and says, “good choice.” Now imagine the same scenario, except this time the person who speaks to you is your ex. The same words, “good choice,” take on a very different meaning. Writers have the artistic license to speak through many voices, and the voices we choose have a large effect on our readers. In this workshop we are going to experiment with building personas and speaking through voices other than our own. We’ll all walk in someone else’s shoes and learn about our own writing styles in the process.

J. Joseph Kane is the program director of SLANT. Before moving to Nashville, Joe taught poetry in Detroit Public Schools as an Inside Out Literary Arts Project writer-in-residence. He has an M.A. in Creative Writing from Central Michigan University, where he taught English and was the editor-in-chief of   Temenos  literary magazine. His poems and stories have been featured in a number of magazines, including  RHINO ,  Elimae ,  theEEEL ,  Clapboard House ,  Cricket Online Review, Psychic Meatloaf, Right Hand Pointing,   The Splinter Generation , and  Admit2 .

J. Joseph Kane is the program director of SLANT. Before moving to Nashville, Joe taught poetry in Detroit Public Schools as an Inside Out Literary Arts Project writer-in-residence. He has an M.A. in Creative Writing from Central Michigan University, where he taught English and was the editor-in-chief of Temenos literary magazine. His poems and stories have been featured in a number of magazines, including RHINOElimaetheEEELClapboard HouseCricket Online Review, Psychic Meatloaf, Right Hand Pointing, The Splinter Generation, and Admit2.