‘The Weight of the World’: Long Poems & Sequences from around the World

‘The Weight of the World’: Long Poems & Sequences from around the World

Long reads – fathoming the deeply written.

From classic texts like John Berryman’s The Dream Songs and Allen Ginsberg’s Howl, through to more recent work by Chen Chen and Denise Riley, long poems and sequences have long formed an important part of the work of writers from around the world. In this course, we will look at a number of approaches to this, from the way in which writers like Roo Borson and Mark Doty have used the long poem to generate huge emotional power, to Les Murray’s explorations of the natural world.

We’ll consider the formal mastery of writers like David Wojahn and Jeet Thayil alongside the experimentations and innovations of Sampurna Chattarji, the celebration of the family in Joshua Bennett, alongside the investigations of the self in Elizabeth Bishop. We’ll also consider in translation some key texts in European writing, such as Paul Valéry’s ‘Le Cimetière Marin’. This is a brand new course, following on from Jonathan’s popular Quality of Sprawl course, with new exercises, drawing inspiration from writing from outside the UK, and open to both new & previous students. 

5 fortnightly sessions over 10 weeks. No live chats. Suitable for UK & International students.  

To apply for a concessionary rate, please send relevant documentation showing your eligibility for one of our concessions to administ[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. 

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About Jonathan Edwards View Profile

Jonathan Edwards’s first collection of poems, My Family and Other Superheroes (Seren, 2014), received the Costa Poetry Award and the Wales Book of the Year People’s Choice Award. It was shortlisted for the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection Prize. His second collection, Gen (Seren, 2018), also received the Wales Book of the Year People’s Choice Award, and his poem about Newport Bridge was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem 2019. Jonathan has read his poems on BBC radio and television, recorded them for the Poetry Archive, and led workshops in schools, universities and prisons. He lives in Crosskeys, South Wales. 

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