Friday, 26 October 2012

Poetry Workshop: Creatures of the Night


I gave a poetry workshop on 'creatures of the night' yesterday at Gainsborough Community Library in Ipswich. We began by thinking about poetry as a painting in words, and thought briefly about what kind of brushstrokes would suit which kind of poems e.g. we might paint Blake's 'Tyger' in bold strokes just as we might use soft words if we were writing about the wool of a new lamb.

We made spidergraphs as poem prompts and used poetry fridge magnets to give us words to incorporate. Each member of the group had brought in a poem, and I was thrilled to see how many had selected a poem that they had written themselves.

We considered the key part played by each word in the poems before us. We also tried to assess the role of repetition and the difference (positive or negative) that an adjective or adverb can make. It was good to have the chance to look again at the 'spotted snakes with double tongues' passage from A Midsummer Night's Dream, and to see how Shakespeare viewed the creatures of the night. 'Rere-mice' was a new (if archaic) word to most of us. I am really looking forward to hearing some of the finished pieces of work next week. My thanks to Mai Black for running the writing group.   

Gainsborough Community Library


Marc Latham said...

Sounds like a worthwhile class Caroline, good luck with it.

Crafty Green Poet said...

sounds like a brilliant class, both the theme and the exercises!