I'm teaching a one-night seminar at Grub Street in June about ideas in poetry. Details below. Please spread the word if you think someone you know might be interested! (Registration information is here.)
The Poem and the Idea
Thursday June 17
7:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Instructor: Elisa Gabbert
Registration Deadline: June 11th
Poems that describe a heron or the moon can be nice, but what sets the one you remember apart from all the rest? Chances are it’s an interesting idea. This seminar will explore poetry as a manifestation of thought, examining the ways in which poems communicate complex ideas (be they overt ideas, diffuse ideas, or meta ideas through conceptualism), the overlapping territory of poetry and philosophy, and the difference between the poetic idea and other modes or tropes, such as imagery, description, narrative, and abstraction. Class time will be divided between lecture, discussion, and in-class reading, with an emphasis on discussion. A reading packet will be distributed, including poems by Rae Armantrout, Anne Carson, Maggie Nelson, Wallace Stevens, and Jon Woodward. Students are encouraged to bring a poem of their own for discussion (and, if desired, revision) from the perspective of the poetic idea.