Courses

Adventures in the Blind Field: An Interview with Sally Flint

An Interview with Sally Flint

“The art of really looking intrigues me – especially how poets interpret, use and move beyond what they see

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A Tale from the World City: David Tait

“Leaving there and proceeding for three days toward the east, you will reach Diomira, a city with sixty silver domes, bronze statues of all the gods, streets paved with lead, a crystal theatre, a golden cock that crows each morning on a tower. All these beauties will already be familiar to the visitor, who has…

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Site-Seeing: An Interview with Holly Corfield Carr

An Interview with Holly Corfield Carr

“Writing poems for particular places might change the way we write, but finding places to write particular poems changes the way we move through the world”

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Ryan Van Winkle’s Blues Gallery

This Autumn, we introduce a new course format on CAMPUS: the Poetry Studio. These will be three-week intensive writing sessions, with inspirational challenges designed for you to get as many poems on the page as possible. We’ve called on our poetry podcaster extraordinaire, Ryan Van Winkle, to take charge of the first of these in September…

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The Stanza: Why do poems have them?

I have a fair few books about writing poetry on my shelves, some more helpful and inspiring than others. They do seem to have one thing in common, though: while they spend plenty of time talking about the poetic line, they have nothing much to say about the stanza. They may discuss set forms of…

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The Bloodjet: An Interview with Katrina Naomi

An Interview with Katrina Naomi

“I think the main thing for me is if you’re going to write about violence, do it well. Let us smell it, taste it.”

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How to Collaborate with Yourself

One of my favourite comics is Robot Hugs’ Identity Shift. It’s addressed to folk exploring gender and sexuality, reassuring them about the anxieties that come when identity shifts and changes over time, but it makes a broader and stranger point: that all of us present ourselves as different people in different places. The face we…

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Making Birds: an Interview with R.A. Villanueva

An Interview with R.A. Villanueva

R.A. Villanueva is an award-winning Filipino-American poet and founding editor of Tongue: A Journal of Writing & Art. His first collection, Reliquaria, won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize, and new writing appears in Poetry, Prac Crit and widely elsewhere. Now living in the UK, Ron’ll be teaching the Summer Term course Making Birds: New Poetic…

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‘Readers of Faces: Poetry as Portraiture’

“Most people ignore most poetry because most poetry ignores most people.”  – Adrian Mitchell I like people. I like reading about them. I like talking to them and getting to know them. I like writing about them. It might just be age, but these days I can’t think of anything worse than meditating on my…

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‘Beyond Romanticism: Green Lanes & Byways’

What are the contours of Romanticism beyond the ‘Big Six’ poets, who we at least think we know? There is no doubting the achievements of Wordsworth, Coleridge and Blake, or Byron, Shelley and Keats: but their poetry sprang from a culture as infinitely rich and various as their verse itself, marked by social ferment and…

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The Poet’s Book: an interview with Lavinia Singer and Anna Robinson

An Interview with Lavinia Singer & Anna Robinson

We interviewed Anna Robinson and Lavinia Singer about their new Poetry School course, The Poet’s Book. Hi Anna! Hi Lavinia! How are you? And what are you both up to? Anna: I am well thanks! I teach writing to students at UEL, at Barking library and to prisoners by distance learning, so I have been…

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Retrospective: Looking back on ‘Hide and Seek in the Ideas Forest’ with Sophie Herxheimer

In this retrospective, we’ll be looking back at some of the poems and works of art created by students on Sophie Herxheimer’s recent Poetry School workshop,  ‘Hide and Seek in the Ideas Forest: Poetry and Picture Making’, and having a chat with Sophie herself about the day. First up, the interview…   Hi Sophie. In the workshop,…

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‘Radio, Radio: Making Poetry Sound’

I listened to The Verb on Radio 3 long before I ever appeared on it, and before I made my first radio documentary. I remember Ken Campbell talking about language, Wendy Cope making poems about going to classical music concerts. It was exciting and inspirational to hear people on the radio talking about poetry, and…

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‘New Myths and Legends: Building a World through Poetry’

There are two types of fictional worlds, one that exists within its own sphere and the other – a place we travel to from our own world. For me the second has always been more compelling, the idea that there are layers to our world, a sort of Platonic imprint, inhabited with creatures or heroic…

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Announcing our Summer 2016 Courses!

Short Courses Making Birds: New Poetic Forms with R.A. Villanueva – experiment, invent new forms, and encounter innovative poetry. Shape Up and Send with Rishi Dastidar – Get your poems fighting fit and send them out into the world. The Poet’s Book with Anna Robinson and Lavinia Singer – produce a handmade book containing your…

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Poetry & Visual Art Gallery Day: Itinerary

Poetry & Visual Art Gallery Day: Itinerary Poets have long drawn inspiration from painters and sculptors; with the rise of a new generation of artists challenging traditional media, can we find in them a source for poems that push boundaries in a similar manner? As part of Tamar Yoseloff’s  Poetry and Visual Art course, students…

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Voice Skills for Poets: an interview with Nicola Collett

Hi Nicola, we’re delighted you’ll be offering a one-day workshop in February. Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Nicola: Yes, I started off as an English and Drama teacher, teaching the 11-18 age group, in comprehensive schools in Harlow and London. Eventually, I became fascinated with the way in which a teacher’s voice…

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5 moments when poetry and pop music collided for the general benefit of us all!

So, as those of you joining my online listening group next term will discover, I reckon pop songs and other assorted detritus from rock ‘n’ roll culture are a great jumping off point for writing poems. Whether it’s the thump of a tom-tom, feedback whistling round your brain, even the sheen of an ill-advised leather…

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What Work Is

We stand in the rain in a long line waiting at Ford Highland Park. For work. You know what work is – if you’re old enough to read this you know what work is, although you may not do it. Philip Levine, ‘What Work Is’ The more I think about what work is, the more…

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Paradise Lost: ‘An Express Elevator to Hell!’

Oh Milton, Milton, Milton: local boy born on Bread Street just off Cheapside; the ‘Lady of Christ’s’ College Cambridge; defender of regicide; pro-divorce pamphleteer; free-speech zealot; house guest of Galileo; blind visionary; dreamer of Paradise Lost, now buried alongside the Barbican’s fountains – how oft I think of thee. Forgive my windy oratory/Milton draws this…

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Follow the Brush: Making Zuihitsu Poetry

Zuihitsu? What is it? I’d never heard of this strange word before either until I first encountered the work of American poet, Kimiko Hahn, and in particular her mesmerizing collection The Narrow Road to the Interior (2006) in which she employs this ancient Japanese technique in the writing of some startlingly modern poetry. If you…

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‘Hearing Voices: reading and responding to world poetry in translation’

Sometimes, as writers, if we tire of the view from the small patch of earth we inhabit, we look to cast our nets wider. The poem in translation is a wondrous thing – self-contained, tardis-like. On a chill, grey November day, what could be better than to be transported to a place where…    ……

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The Poem as Party Guest: an interview with Wayne Holloway-Smith

Hi Wayne, we’re very excited you’ve joined the Poetry School team. Can you tell us more about your course, what’s it all about? Wayne: Cheers. Yes, the course idea came to me after I attended a friend’s party and was collared by an individual who monopolised my attention for an extraordinarily long time. As the individual’s…

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‘Long Poems & Invocations: Making the Measure Work for You’

Often teachers tell poets to hone, edit and show not tell, or use language more sparingly, but what if we want to rage and roam, and embrace the mental rollercoaster ride which is the long poem? Writing a long poem can be a chance to immerse yourself in the subconscious and surprise yourself with the…

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‘A Life on the Edge: Hinterlands and Homelands’

Pray for us now. Grade 1 piano scales console the lodger looking out across a Midlands town. Then dusk, and someone calls a child’s name as though they named their loss. Darkness outside. Inside, the radio’s prayer – Rockall. Malin. Dogger. Finisterre. ‘Prayer’ by Carol Ann Duffy   The number of people who will have…

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