W383 2050 BOWMAN
The Craft of Poetry

1:00p-3:00p T (15) 3 cr.


This course will experiment with the forms of poetry. We’ll start the semester looking at the music-making, bodily aspects of the poem, exploring its roots in dance and song. We’ll scan poems and learn about rhythm, meter, and rhyme. Next we’ll experiment with traditional verse structures and stanza forms, and rhetoric. We will attend to prosody, or “the meaning of form.” After trying out traditional verse forms– such as sonnets, blues poems, terza rima, and villanelle, we will venture into the worlds of “the poetic line” after free verse. We will also write poems that make use of contemporary non-literary forms. Some memorization will be required. Rather than write papers, we’ll write poems and do weekly exercises. We will read several essays. I’ll also assign an anthology of poetry. And possibly a few of the books listed below:

Tentative booklist:
An Exaltation of Forms: Contemporary Poets Celebrate the Diversity of their Art, Annie Finch and
Katherine Varnes.
Ecstatic Occasions, Expedient Forms, David Lehman.
Handbook of Poetic Forms, Ron Padgett
Technicians of the Sacred, A Range of Poetries of Africa, America, Asia, Europe, and Oceania,
Jerome Rothenberg
Rhyme’s Reason, John Hollander
The Structure of Verse, Harvey Gross
Sound States, Innovative Poetics and Acoustical Technologies, Adalaide Morris