Poetry and World Events

Poetry and World Events

Write poems that attend to ‘big changes’ on the world stage with Fiona Hamilton in this one-day workshop in Bristol.

‘There are two ways to worry words. One is hoping for the greatest possible beauty in what is created. The other is to tell the truth.’ – June Jordan

Our world is changing. What does poetry have to say? How might poetry respond in a ‘post-truth’ environment? What is the role of poetry in a media-dominated world? In this one-day workshop we will read poems that attend to ‘big changes’ – climate, social and political change, conflict, innovations. We will write from a variety of stimuli, finding our own ways of relating to such themes.

Poems may offer ways to say the unsayable, or to offer fresh perspectives. Is ‘telling the truth’ part of this? What do poems do that other kinds of utterances don’t or can’t?  We’ll explore poems and writing that propose their own truth – loudly, quietly, flamboyantly, subtly. We’ll look at how poets in different places and times have addressed themes in protest poems and lyrics, satire, close observation, allegory, dramatic and spoken word. There will be a chance to consider the effects of these expressions for the reader, the writer, and for wider audiences.

Participants will be given stimuli for their own writing throughout the day, with opportunities for sharing and discussion. A lively, focused and supportive environment will be encouraged.

One-day workshop from 10:30am to 4:30pm on Saturday 8th July. There will a lunch break and tea breaks during the day. Lunch is not provided. Students are welcome to bring their own, or to visit the local shops and cafes during the break. 

More information about how all our face-to-face courses work can be found on the Face-to-Face courses page.

About Fiona Hamilton Profile photo of Fiona Hamilton View Profile

Fiona Hamilton lives in Bristol. Her story-in-verse Bite Sized (Vala Publishers, 2014) has been performed with dancers at Bristol’s Tobacco Factory Theatre. Other poetry collections are Poems for People (supported by Belmont Poetry Prize) for young readers, and Skinandi (Two Turtles Press & Poetry Can), completed in Caithness, Scotland, where previous generations of her family lived. Fiona’s cross-artform work includes poetry with film, theatre, public art and visual art. Fiction includes the short story Making Pierogi for BBC Radio which draws on time spent living in Poland. She is a tutor of creative writing and its therapeutic applications with Metanoia Institute and Orchard Foundation, and works with people in healthcare and community settings who seek creative expression. Recent non-fiction is an exploration of poetic writing process for the Finnish journal Scriptum Creative Writing Studies, entitled Words and Thresholds.

Many thanks to you all for providing a creative and nurturing environment for poetry and poets, and special thanks for the guidance and inspiration I’ve found within your community.

- Survey July 2014

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