‘Where I’m From’: Poetry & Place (Masterclass)

‘Where I’m From’: Poetry & Place (Masterclass)

Use poetry to sing, celebrate, curse, and investigate place.

From Dylan Thomas’s Laugharne to Liz Berry’s Black Country, poetry is often at its best when it is intimately connected with place, and this course will celebrate and inspire writing that has place at its heart. We will look at sweeping poems of landscape and gritty observations of the city, considering how the music of language can celebrate what’s around us. Local gossip and folklore can inspire, and we will consider how the vernacular of an area, for writers like Tom Paulin and Alan Gillis, can enrich poems. We will use unusual points of view – what would a city say if it could speak? What would a bird circling overhead think about this landscape? ‘Places we love exist only through us,’ declares Ivan V Lalic, and one rich thing about place is how it is written over by personal and public history. Lastly, of course, there’s the life of the place, the creatures that amble down footpath or A-road. A connection with place or placelessness, with stillness or movement, can be one of the richest aspects of a poet’s work, and this course will sing, celebrate, curse, and investigate place.

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.

More information about how all our online courses work can be found on the Online Courses page.

Image Credit: Luke Stackpoole

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, and is editor of Poetry Wales.

‘There is no poetry community where I live, but these courses have given me access to a busy, responsive, energetic and generous community which has completely changed my writing life in a multitude of wonderful ways.’

– Summer 2019 survey response

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