“I want to look at a poem I’ve been working on.” My writer uttered these words at the beginning of a tutorial last week, and the phrase filled me with fear and anxiety immediately. I am an English student, to be sure, and maybe that’s why she chose to make an appointment with me – but I study English literature! I don’t write short stories or poems, I don’t workshop, and the whole business of creative writing remains mysterious and somewhat awe-inspiring to me. I’ve heard of “those that don’t write, teach,” but when you’ve been writing mostly blog posts and the odd formalist analysis of a 19th century novel, it’s hard to know what to say. I wondered what I could possibly offer this student, but to my surprise, I found plenty to say (as did she). The appointment was fun, informative, and refreshingly relaxed. As a writer (and not a poet) I may not have had much to offer, but as an engaged reader, I was able to offer insights to this struggling writer. (more…)
Today’s poem in celebration of the end of this year’s National Poetry Month in April is a beautiful short poem called “Rain” by the Iranian poet Ali Abdolrezaei — a fitting selection given last night’s warm thunder/hail/lightning storm in Chicago. (more…)
National Poetry Month: “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” April 27, 2012
This week’s installment for National Poetry Month is the ballad “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” by Goethe, a man best known for his contributions to literature as well as poetry, science and philosophy. Written in 1797, “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” was adapted as a symphonic poem by Paul Dukas for Walt Disney’s 1940 movie Fantasia (listen to a sample here), where the apprentice is none other than Mickey Mouse. You can watch the acclaimed, dialogue-free animation in its entirety here. Watch the clip after reading the poem to decide how true to the original text you find the adaptation. (more…)
Put a Poem in Your Pocket April 20, 2012
The Collaborative for Multilingual Writing and Research’s second installment in celebration of National Poetry Month comes from the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. This coming Thursday, April 26th is Poem in Your Pocket Day. Join the celebration by printing out your favorite poem to carry around with you and share with friends.
Y fue a esa edad… Llegó la poesía (more…)
CMWR Celebrates Poetry Across Borders and Boundaries April 13, 2012
We text, we tweet, and we Facebook, but do we lyricize?
Plato argued that “Poetry comes nearer to vital truth than history,” and Robert Fitzgerald contended that “Poetry is at least an elegance and at most a revelation.” In our fast-paced, high-speed internet lives we have become expert at rapidly ingesting information and quickly forming first impressions. But how often do we pay attention? (more…)
Submit Your Work to Threshold – Submissions Deadline Now Extended! February 15, 2012
Hi all! Threshold, DePaul’s premier student-run literary journal, is still accepting submissions for its Spring 2012 issue. Submit your fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, or dramatic literature to email@example.com before February 24th. All submitters will receive free and helpful feedback on the work, and possibly publication in the journal!
More information is available here.
Looking to Get Published? Submit Your Work to Threshold! January 25, 2012
Threshold is DePaul’s premier student-run literary journal, and they’re accepting submissions now for the Spring 2012 issue! If you’re a poet, a writer, or just someone interested in getting some feedback on your writing, submit your work today!
That’s right – Threshold is offering written feedback (about one paragraph’s worth) for any submission they receive this year. You can submit one piece for the fiction, creative nonfiction, and dramatic literature categories, and up to 3 pieces to the poetry category. Artwork and short video submissions are also accepted (and encouraged). More information is available on the Threshold site.
The deadline for this year is February 10 at 5 pm, so make sure you get your work in on time to have a chance of being published. Good luck and happy writing!
This week’s free dose of poetic culture October 3, 2011
In celebration of National Poetry Day, W.S. Merwin, the 2010 U.S. Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner, will give a free reading at the Cindy Pritzger Auditorium of the Harold Washington Library. The reading will begin at 6 p.m. on Thursday, October 11, but get there early; audience members will be admitted on a first-come, first-served basis, according to the Poetry Foundation, which sponsors the event.
Merwin’s work, with its narrative style and straightforward imagery that is accessible to even those who might consider themselves poetry-shy, dates back to the 1950s and includes nearly 30 books of poems. He is also an accomplished translator, having interpreted foreign language poetry for English-speaking audiences. An extended biography and selections of Merwin’s work are available on the Academy of American Poets website. I hope you’ll join me in listening to this legend live!