Real World, Real Poems: Readings in Documentary Poetics

When: Back to Calendar » May 1, 2013 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm


Real World, Real Poems: Readings in Documentary Poetics 
by Students from the Graduate Writing Program at Otis College


Once one has covered thousands of anonymous corpses with a blanket of
ashes and sand, one cultivates forgetting.
So poetry rises. Out of necessity. Amidst the disorder where human
dignity is trampled, poetry becomes urgent language.
But words pale when the wound is deep, when the well-planned chaos is
brutal and irreversible. Against that, words. And what can they do?
—Tahar Ben Jelloun, The Rising of the Ashes

Experience taken into the body, breathed-in, so that reality is the
completion of experience, and poetry is what is produced. And life is
what is produced.
—Muriel Rukeyser, from The Life of Poetry

What are the “realities” of poetry? What are the realities of the world we come into? What is possible when art-making or writing engages with “real-world” realities? What kind of reality comes from perception and our recording of it? Join participants in the Real World, Real Poems: Documentary Strategies class to explore the zones where poetry and documentary intersect.

Readers will be: Rachel Kaminer, Kathy MacPherson, Soonie Makaena, Rachel Schramm, Lara Sterling, and Victor Yates.