Charles Simic compared writing a prose poem to “trying to catch a fly in a dark room. The fly probably isn’t even there, the fly is inside your head, still, you keep tripping over and bumping into things in hot pursuit. The prose poem is a burst of language following a collision with a large piece of furniture.” In this workshop, the focus will be on prose poetry as a vehicle or conveyer belt for subversive content that doesn’t fit well in other boxes.
Participants will study the techniques and subversions of contemporary prose poets (including Layli Long Soldier, Zbigniew Herbert, Ann Waldman, Danielle Mitchell, and others) in addition to writing and revising their own prose poems. Specific techniques will include parallelism, parataxis, lexical accretion, and various subversions of voice. We will generate new poems and revisit old poems that ache to be poured into different glasses. There are so many incredible ways to experience collisions with large pieces of furniture. We’ll focus on turning those collisions into small bricks of poetry.
Register online at the Bending Genres Workshop page.