This is a free workshop intended for high school students. Students of all backgrounds and skill levels are welcome. Workshop seating is limited, so RSVP to save your seat. Registration is open. Sign up here!
The body is political—open any news source and see for yourself. Bodies allowed or not allowed in bathrooms, refugee bodies, murdered black bodies, bodies we must count after mass shootings or drone strikes. It is no surprise that more people are turning to poetry in times of trauma, in times of war…there is good reason for it. Poets are closest to language, and language holds great power. The power to respond. The power to sing. The power to rise and give voice to the oppressed, the underrepresented. In this generative workshop, we will explore and shine a light on how contemporary poets are harnessing this power to speak and respond to the issues facing American bodies in our current day. Through our workshop, as well as generative writing exercises, we will delve into ways that we, as poets, can respond, further investigate, and discover how language makes this possible. We will read examples from current poets like Jericho Brown, Solmaz Sharif, Danez Smith, Ocean Vuong, and Katie Ford, among others. How have these poets responded/began a discussion of/bore witness to issues bodies face within current American politics? And more importantly, how can we?