Write into the Territory

Write into the Territory

Rewrite the explorer's handbook on a liberating poetic adventure

This is a course on movement through words, and alternative psychogeographies. Participants will look at the poetics of walking charted in prose, and the praise of walking celebrated in poetry. To begin, we shall feel our way into how we experience our own movements through our everyday routines, and what makes a journey ordinary or extraordinary. We shall sketch imaginary walks with literary companions, chosen from postcard- or pocket map-sized extracts. There will be a break for exploration of the territory (or room). Later, we will unravel assumptions about walking. Who can roam? Here contemporary poets voicing different bodies in different walking modes (disabled, racialised, classed, female, non-binary, domestic, migratory) become pilgrims, mappers or guides: Polly Atkin, Cathy Dreyer, Harry Josephine Giles, Zaffar Kunial, Kei Miller, Shara McCallum. Students will come away with a liberatory and renewed definition of access to authorship and ‘psychogeography’. Using a variety of strategies to activate the field of the page as a space for dance, resistance, pursuit, fleeing, creative failure and ambitious joy, they will create a new piece of poetic writing.

Saturday 23 February, 10.30am – 4.30pm

All classes will be in our offices at 1 Dock Offices, Surrey Quays Road, Canada Water, SE16 2XU. The venue is a 2-minute walk from Canada Water Station. Take the ‘Lower Road’ exit from the station onto Surrey Quays Road, then walk straight ahead, crossing over Deal Porters Way, and the Dock Offices come up on the left. The door for the school is at the far end of the building.

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

About Vahni Capildeo View Profile

Vahni Capildeo is a Trinidadian Scottish writer with interests in place, memory, multilingualism, and intersemiotic work, including collaboration and performance. Their books include Venus as a Bear, which has strong ekphrastic and phenomenological strands, and Measures of Expatriation (winner of the Forward Poetry Prizes Best Collection, 2016), which moves between poetry and prose. Skin Can Hold, texts for performance, is due in 2019. Current projects include collaborations on alternative psychogeographies with Polly Atkin and Harry Josephine Giles, on expanded/intersemiotic translation with Chris McCabe, and on poemfilms with Andre Bagoo. They are a traditional masquerader at Carnival (fancy sailor; midnight robber) and have an ongoing association with the Bocas Litfest and with INISH: Island Conversations in Inishbofin. They are the Douglas Caster Cultural Fellow in Poetry at the University of Leeds.

‘I am a poet with a disabling health condition and coming to the Poetry School has helped me grab back my identity (which illnesses can try to steal away) and prioritise what is meaningful in my life. It has brought learning, confidence, courage and friendship.’

– Autumn 2017 Survey response

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