Exciting poems often feel as if an electrical charge is pulsating through every line. It’s a charge you want to get shocked by because it will lead you through states of joy, grief, horror, and resolution, among others. Even better, in his craft essay “Sad Anthropologists: The Dialectical Use of Tone”, Tony Hoagland states that poetry, more than any other literary genre, can “take the distinct lyric moment and slice it open, expose the musculature and skeleton, label its most particular tissues. And the name of the instrument is tone.” In this generative workshop we will study Hoagland’s essay alongside poems by Claudia Rankine, Paul Killabrew, Jericho Brown, Dawn Lundy Martin, Anne Carson, Laura Kasischke, Sean Bishop, Diana Khoi Nguyen, and others to study the myriad of ways one can dissect a moment for its emotional parts and improve this capacity in our own writing.
A former Editor-in-Chief for Sycamore Review, Anthony Sutton holds an MFA in poetry from Purdue University and has had work appear or forthcoming in Gulf Coast, Indianapolis Review, Southern Indiana Review, The Journal, Grist, Prairie Schooner, Passages North, Puerto del Sol, Third Coast, and elsewhere.