Write poems inspired by myths and legends from across the globe
Folklore reflects the fears, values and aspirations of a culture. It’s also an endlessly rich mine of inspiration and resonant images for poetry. But beyond Greek and Roman myth and Grimm fairy tales and nursery rhymes, many folklores remain relatively untapped. On this course we’ll look further afield: from Arabian tales to ancient Mayan mythology and Japanese demonology. We’ll find ways to adapt and re-imagine this source material, making new poetry from classic legends and stories unfamiliar to most contemporary audiences. Students will be encouraged and guided in avoiding simple re-tellings, instead teasing out connections to their own lived experience and creative instincts. Sessions will cover everything from rumours and world-building to hometown urban myths. We will discuss the issue of cultural appropriation and other ethical concerns surrounding the use of material from other cultures, emphasising respectful collaboration, and we will also consider fictional lores of the sort found in comics and fantasy novels, and how they can be utilised. Students are encouraged to develop and submit work in any form they wish, from collage to sound poetry to traditional poetic forms.
5 fortnightly sessions over 10 weeks. Live chats on Thursdays, 7-9pm GMT, first live chat starting 24 October 2019.
More information about how all our online courses work can be found on the Online Courses page.
A 10% discount is available to residents local to the Poetry School (anyone currently living in Rotherhithe, Riverside, Surrey Docks, South Bermondsey, Grange or Livesey). Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Image Credit: Symphoney Symphoney
About Kirsten Irving View Profile
Kirsten Irving is a Lincolnshire-born writer, editor and voiceover artist, based in London. She co-runs Sidekick Books with Jon Stone, and is the editor of more than ten anthologies, covering such topics as demons, birds and video games. Her first pamphlet, What To Do, was published by HappenStance and her first full collection, Never Never Never Come Back, by Salt. Kirsten’s poetry has been widely anthologised, translated into Russian and Spanish and thrown out of a helicopter. She won the Live Canon International Poetry Prize in 2011 and 2017, and was commended in the 2017 Keats-Shelley Prizes and the 2018 National Poetry Awards for her folklore poetry. She is currently collaborating with artist Renee O’Drobinak on a collection mixing sci-fi with Japanese demons.
‘I resolved to do something that terrified me in 2019, take poetry out of the privacy of my room and talk to others about it. I was really apprehensive about attending the workshop, but I found the teacher really understanding, the session broke down some of my trepidation. My whole life I have been nervous to talk to others about poetry for fear of judgement, so it was a unique opportunity to speak to other people who are curious about poetry too. I came away buzzing with energy and feeling empowered.’