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Erasure: The Extreme Sport of Poetic Constraint: An Introduction with Jennifer Sperry Steinorth, in person at HVWC

July 15 @ 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm


Sonnets, villanelles, haiku, ghazal…? Love it or hate it, working in poetic constraint can certainly hone your chops! And this form–ERASURE–at once tighter and looser than other poetic forms– can be a thrilling way to eschew writer’s block and infuse your writing with new skills..

Our generative workshop and craft talk will briefly introduce the history, methodologies and ethical concerns of this extreme form of poetry, and provide numerous exercises designed to help you discover new language in old texts.

We’ll examine excerpts from several book-length erasures, each engaging in different kinds of conversation with their source texts. I’ll share a little of my experience working with erasure and offer numerous tips on working with found texts including selecting texts, language, materials, formal representation and publishing venues.

Participants are encouraged to bring texts and materials they are interested in working with, but texts and materials will also be provided.

Authors we examine will include: M. NourbeSe Philip, Tom Phillips, Isabel O’hare, Philip Metres, Srikanth Reddy, Tracy K. Smith, Alison Thumel and others.

This class will be capped at 15 students, and held in person at HVWC.

Jennifer Sperry Steinorth’s books include A Wake with Nine Shades and Her Read, A Graphic Poem, recipient of the Foreword Reviews Bronze Prize for Poetry and the Fred Whitehead Award for design form the Texas Institute of Letters. A poet, educator, interdisciplinary artist and licensed builder, she has received grants from Vermont Studio Center, the Sewanee Writers Conference, Community of Writers and the MFA for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Their poems appear in Beloit Poetry Journal, Black Warrior Review, The Cincinnati Review, Mid-American Review, Missouri Review, New Ohio Review, Pleiades, Plume, Rhino, and TriQuarterly. She is a lecturer at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and a 2023-2024 Beinecke Fellow at Yale where she is at work on a biography of American poet, C.D. Wright.


July 15
12:30 pm - 2:30 pm
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Hudson Valley Writers Center
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Hudson Valley Writers Center
300 Riverside Drive
Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591 United States
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