Tuesday, July 28, 1987

Napa Poetry Conference: Steve Kowit workshops

Assignment for Thursday.

Write a short poems under 12 lines. Think of four or five lines mostly built with images. Think of a title, and then think of another title to transform or change it. Change the first and the last line also to transform it. (not sure whose workshop this was).

Other ideas:

Write a poem about the death of an animal.
1. use one long sentence, graceful clear and muscles with thirst.
2. Put your name in the poem.
3. Make one line where the poem seems to shift into another direction.
4. In a matter-of-fact tone, write a shocking fact.
5. Use at least one other technique you learned this week.

LAX to SFO

Last to board the plane
my crutches caught on the steep ramp.
No use at this speed.
You say about yourself
that any woman with any sense at all
could see that you're a walking disaster area
when it comes to love.
Your daughter just turned 18
and the gaps are too big for us to bridge.

MH

Steve Kowit workshops

1. Write a short poem of personal crisis, with another person
2. an active incident that occurred and exemplified the crisis. Use three lines out of the incident and move into the natural world. Think of it as a correlative think of it as symbolic of this experience. Use only 4 to 6 lines.
3Think of one person, think of another person, think of another person
4. add a place, a memory where you are alone.
5. Add a loss.
6.something you cherish
7. a person you've not written about.

Some other ideas:
Write a dark short political palm about breasts
Write a long sentence problem
Write an image and an abstraction in every other line
Write a sentence fragment without a verb, now throw out all the ifs, ands and buts— all the connections.

Write a parody of your own work
Write a non-positive portrait
Write about a person in relation to an object.
Write a poem directly addressing a person that use no descriptive language
Write a narrative around a single incident using the self is as a detached observer and use a very very long lines.

Do a surreal dream image
Use five unrelated objects with emotional meaning and interest. Think of it as an exercise in nimbleness and synthesis.

Make up five titles for poems
Make up five opening sentences for poems
Write about music, person, landscape, building, weather, time of year, a book, someone you love, a card game, a prize.

Write a poem or a page of prose that connects, or brings out the underlying unities, use three elements. The links might be through lines, ideas, or images. 
Write a poem: how I knew Harold.

Who was Harold?

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