What brings a poem from a first-person narrative, to what has been termed Confessional poetry? Looking at poems by groundbreaking poets Sylvia Plath, Ann Sexton, and Ai, we will explore how these women poets broke through barriers of sex and language, how they shaped their work, and, using their examples, we will break through our own boundaries. A packet will be sent to participants before the workshop, with poems from each of the poets and background information of their eras, along with suggestions for our own writing. Each participant will write 3 poems, inspired by each of these Confessional poets, and poems by participants will be read carefully and discussed.
This workshop will explore the paradox of writing the Ineffable: how to describe what is almost gone, the lost moment, extreme beauty, depth of fleeting feeling. We will discuss the different techniques used in the work of Jorie Graham, Susan Stewart, and Joanna Klink, three poets that capture the Ineffable. We will generate work of our own, for deep discussion in this collaborative workshop.