Poetry is often described as a conversation—with the self, the world, and the work of other writers.
In this introductory course, you'll gain the tools you need to enter the conversation through a hands-on study of poetic techniques and structures. You'll examine poetic language, exploring how elements such as rhythm, pacing, alliteration and repetition can transform a line and make it sing.
You'll also study traditional and emerging forms as windows into the hidden machinery of a poem, experimenting with everything from sestinas to sonnets, ghazals to glosas, found poetry to spoken word. You'll read contemporary and classic poems and use them to inform your work, give and receive feedback on poems-in-progress, and consider the skills involved in giving a public reading. All the while, you'll be in conversation—with yourself, the world, the poems, your instructor, and a supportive community of other writers.
Workshopping and feedback: This course includes instructor feedback on weekly assignments. You'll also submit two pieces for workshopping and receive written feedback from your instructor and other students. In turn, you'll provide feedback to your classmates, and benefit your own writing by seeing feedback on others' work.
- Wed, Jan 25 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Feb 1 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Feb 8 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Feb 15 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Feb 22 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Mar 1 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Mar 8 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Mar 15 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Mar 22 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Mar 29 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Sep 20 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Sep 27 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Oct 4 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Oct 11 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Oct 18 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Oct 25 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Nov 1 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Nov 8 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Nov 15 (self-paced all week)
- Wed, Nov 22 (self-paced all week)
What you will learn
By the end of the course, you will be able to do the following:
- Identify forms of poetry and apply them to your own work
- Use poetic language and techniques to strengthen your writing
- Give and receive effective feedback on works-in-progress
- Think and speak about poetry with confidence
- Maintain an ongoing reading practice and use your reading to inform your writing
How you will learn and be evaluated
- Read weekly modules
- Complete additional weekly reading (if assigned)
- Complete a writing assignment each week for feedback from the instructor
- Participate in weekly discussions based on readings and activities
- Read and provide feedback on other students’ work each week
- Submit two pieces of your own writing for feedback from the instructor and other students
This course is graded using a competency-based grading scale.
Course fees do not include textbooks. We encourage you to purchase from your local independent bookstore or the sources listed below.
Taylor, Rob.What the Poets are Doing. Harbour Publishing, 2018. ISBN-10: 0-88971-343-X, ISBN 13: 978-0-88971-343-7. Available for purchase from publisher.
Braid, Kate and Shreve, Sandy. In Fine Form: A Contemporary Look at Canadian Form Poetry (2nd Edition).Caitlin Press, 2017. ISBN-10: 198791502X, ISBN-13: 978-1987915020. Available for purchase from publisher.
For online courses, you will need a computer with audio and microphone that is connected to the internet. Canvas is the online system that will be used for the course. For more information and online support, visit Online Learning.