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Note: When a reading is assigned for discussion, bring the book from which the reading comes with you to class. Otherwise, you'll be marked absent.


  • PC: Poet's Companion
  • NG: Native Guard
  • OBAP: Oxford Book of American Poetry
  • Hit CTRL + f5 to refresh
T 19-Aug-14

Introduction to Course: Four Levels of Poetry


what to study for quiz

R 21-Aug-14

Poetic Reading and invention


In your notebook:

In addition to doing your first Core Poems exercise, do one "place poetry" exercise (1, 2, 5, or 6) and one "image" exercise (1, 3, 4, or 5). Bring your notebook to class Tuesday, and print out one of the "childhood poems" above that you especially like. Bring that too.

Finally, bring 15 verbs from a non-literary specialized vocabulary: cooking, violin playing, horseback riding, science textbook, painting, etc. Here are the verbs from Thursday

T 26-Aug-14

Mixing memory and desire


  • PC 94-104
  • Exercise(1): *Write one of the following (due on Friday on Blackboard):
    • Place poem
    • refrain poem based on MacNeice
    • Mullen's Momma Sayings
  • don't forget to use three of these verbs

what to study for quiz

R 28-Aug-14

A reading sheet example

Image and Metaphor



T 2-Sep-14


  • Who is speaking?
  • How many voices
  • Is a character created as a mask for the poet? In other words, is there a persona?
  • Does the poet fictionalize him/herself?
  • Does the poet draw attention to him/herself?
  • Is the voice introverted? Meditative?
  • Does the poem imply a particular context or setting or set of circumstance? How are they presented?
  • How private are the circumstances? How general?
  • How is the sound, syntax and/or structure used to help shape the voice?
  • What tone does the speaker adopt?
    Is the voice controlling? powerful? weak? playful? ignorant? naive?
  • What is the point of view? Is there more than one point of view being presented?

Poems with voice


Imperative mood



  • PC: 186-195
  • Read Part I of Tretheway and be prepared to discuss it (you can take notes in your notebook).
  • (2) *Write a directive. By Friday, September 5, post it on the class group discussion board . Respond to your group's poems by Wednesday, September 10.

what to study for quiz


R 4-Sep-14

Revision: an exercise

Tretheway book



  • Read and respond to the poems posted for the next class.
  • Print the poems for in-class discussion and bring them to class, along with two copies of your comments. (Use the same structure to comment on the poems online).

what to study for quiz

T 9-Sep-14

Reading sheet tips




  • By Friday, post your second poem to the class message board in Blackboard.
  • Read and respond to poems posted posted for the next class. Print the poems for in-class discussion and bring them to class, along with two copies of your comments. (Use the same structure to comment on the poems online).
  • Read and respond to at least three poems posted on the board by next Wednesday.
  • Read some nature poems

what to study for quiz

R 11-Sep-14


Nature poems and cliche poems



T 16-Sep-14

Guy Noir & Billy Collins

Persona poems

Note: I will grade the discussion board soon, so don't forget to respond to poems.


What to study for quiz

R 18-Sep-14

Sestinas--group sestina

Interesting words

Some sestinas



  • Don't forget to post your next poems and discuss them in groups.
  • Post three poems for class workshop by Friday (tomorrow)
  • Find a favorite sestina for a week from today (Thursday)
T 23-Sep-14

Workshop (No reading sheet today).



  • Read and respond to the poems posted for the next class as well as the poems posted onthe class message board on Blackboard.
  • Read part 2 of Native Guard.


R 25-Sep-14

More on paper: analysis of a book of poetry

Native Guard, Part 2

Sestinas, continued (bring one you like to class)


  • PC 138-151
  • Work on a *sestina (required).

what to study for quiz

T 30-Sep-14

Some essays on line breaks


Accentual verse and syllabic verse

Accentual (Anglo/saxon)


Try one with a partner

Note: you should have written and handed in at least 3 poems by now and should be working on a 4th.

Read: Tretheway part 3. Take notes and be prepared to discuss.

Homework: second Reading sheet due after fall break (October 21). Reminder that worksheet on Tretheway is due before fall break.

R 2-Oct-14

Tretheway part 3



  • (6) *Write a poem either in syllabics or in anglo-saxon verse (hand in by Friday, October 10)

what to study for quiz

T 7-Oct-14




R 9-Oct-14

Blank verse (with Kim McMurtry's blank verse version)

slant rhyme and rhyme hiding



  • Reading sheet (3) due for Monday after break
  • (7) *Write at least 14 lines in Iambic pentameter (hand in by Monday after break. Note that if it isn't correct, you have to rewrite it! )

what to study for quiz

T 14-Oct-14 Fall Break
R 16-Oct-14 Fall Break
T 21-Oct-14

My handout: hiding the rhyme

Practice hiding the rhyme

Discussion of papers

Exercise: Half poems or revisions

*Write a poem by borrowing the form of one of the poems above (Auden, Musee des Beaux Arts, Wilbur, Advice to a Prophet, Herbert, Man, Hebert, The Collar, Owen, Strange Meeting, Donne, Go an Catch a Falling Star. Use one or more strategies to "hide your rhyme."

R 23-Oct-14 Special class with Ron Rash  
T 28-Oct-14 Advising Day
R 30-Oct-14 Workshopping

Read Poet's Companion: Stop Making Sense (129-137)

Read about Deep images and Surrealism

T 4-Nov-14

Estranging your muse

In-class exercise


R 6-Nov-14


Terza rima or infernal meter




  • (10)Write a villanelle or Terza Rima* using slant rhyme and radically enjamed lines.
  • Send me this poem and your found poem or cut-out by Sunday evening. Inicate which one you'd like to worship.
T 11-Nov-14 Workshopping
R 13-Nov-14

Ekphrasis: Poems about Art


T 18-Nov-14 Workshopping
R 20-Nov-14

Found Poems, Collages, and Cut-outs

T 25-Nov-14

Online workshopping

R 27-Nov-14 Thanksgiving Break
T 2-Dec-14


R 4-Dec-14
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