Languages of the Body Masterclass

Languages of the Body Masterclass

Explore the potential for poetics to transform bodily experience into new creative work.

This course is for anyone inhabiting a body, with a desire to translate your felt world into poetry. We will transform the deeply individual languages of the body into poetic exercises, bringing keen attention to sensory input from our breathing, ever fluidly-changing selves.  

However you identify the vessel you live in, we’ll explore how to write what a body feels, and why we feel we must. We’ll take on poetics as a tool to investigate how the fundamental need to translate inner experiences meets the gap between ourselves and other human and non-human entities, and how they influence our own self-perception. We will negotiate pains and pleasures, and de-romanticise ‘abled’ notions of writing them, showing new ways to explore the relationship of ‘functioning’, embodiment, desire, illness, grief, and identity.  

Together, we will translate the sensations, aches, tingles, groans, joys, panics, sensorial spectrums, emotional and mental states, and deeply individual languages of the body into poetic exercises. The end result will be poems that push the realm of bodily poetics both outward and further within – and work for various sensorial modes, including audio and video, is embraced and encouraged. For inspiration, we’ll look at poetics in various media, including the work of Itō Hiromi tr. Jeffrey Angles, Lee Hyemi tr. Soje, Johanna Hedva, Mel Y. Chen, Bea Webster, Andy Jackson, Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, and more. 

Masterclasses are an expanded version of our International Courses, with a much deeper consideration of technical craft and critical theory. These 12-week courses (maximum 10 places) are for advanced students only, and fluency with poetic language and ideas will be assumed. There are no live chats and they are suitable for UK and International students.  

To apply for a concessionary rate, please send relevant documentation showing your eligibility for one of our concessions to [email protected] Conditions of eligibility are detailed here. If you have any questions or wish to be added to the waiting list of a sold-out course, please email [email protected]. For more information visit our Online Courses page. 

Image Credit: Mary Koval

About Khairani Barokka View Profile

Khairani Barokka is Editor of Modern Poetry in Translation, and a Minang-Javanese writer and artist from Jakarta, now based in London. Her work has been presented widely, across 18 countries, and centres disability justice as anticolonial praxis. Among Okka’s honours, she was a UNFPA Indonesian Young Leader Driving Social Change for arts practice and research, an NYU Tisch Departmental Fellow, Modern Poetry in Translation’s Inaugural Poet-in-Residence, and Associate Artist at the UK’s National Centre for Writing. Her books include Rope (Nine Arches, 2017), Indigenous Species (Tilted Axis, 2016), co-edited volume Stairs and Whispers: D/deaf and Disabled Poets Write Back (Nine Arches, 2017), shortlisted for a Saboteur Award, and her most recent book, Ultimatum Orangutan (Nine Arches, 2021), which was shortlisted for the Barbellion Prize. 

'The Poetry School is an inspiring community for developing one's poetry and connecting with like minded people. It changed my life - I wouldn't be without it.'

- Spring 2022 survey response

Related Courses