In every class I’ve taught, students have told me they’ve especially valued our writing prompts. “Give a man a fish,” the idiom goes, “and you feed him for a day.” In this weekend workshop, I’ll show you how to turn the poems you love (whether written by you or not) into writing prompts that, in turn, help you generate poem after poem after poem. In other words, this Zoom-based weekend workshop will teach you how to fish—and how to turn the whole written world into your oyster.
You can show up to this class completely as you are, no advanced reading required, no manuscript-in-progress needed, no previous experience requested. Poems exist as visual art, as literal texts, as breath performances, and as emotional experiences (and as a million other phenomena, too). If you have ever had a feeling, you will find your footing in this class. I also welcome published writers and post-grads, too, as there will be new approaches and sustaining community for you here, too. All writing for this class can be done within the time we’ll be together, so those with busy schedules and no time for homework can still participate.
Unlocking poetry is a devotional practice—bringing our close attention to anything (a caterpillar, a cup of coffee, a leaf, a stanza) is an act of love and resilience. I hope you join us in this class, cultivating deeper ways to engage with the world, first via words, then out and into all arenas of life.
Cait Weiss Orcutt’s work has appeared in Boston Review, Chautauqua, FIELD, and more. Her book VALLEYSPEAK (2017) won the Zone 3 First Book Prize. Cait has an MFA from The Ohio State University and a PhD from University of Houston, facilitating writing workshops at Inprint, Writers in the Schools, and other organizations in New York, Texas, and Ohio along the way.