Walking and Writing Workshop with Zara Raab and Hilde Weisert
May 6 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm$35
“Traveler, there is no path.
The path is made by walking.”
— Antonio Machado
One strong connection between writing and walking is the rhythms of the poetic line, the flow of accented and unaccented syllables, the beat and sound of one’s own footsteps on the path, the often unconscious connection of meaning and sound: The jujujeeeejujeeju of a sparrow permeates the flow of our inner thoughts, the colors in the trees and hills suddenly make us alive to our mood or remind us of something in our own lives. We may find ourselves delighting in the subtleties of word sounds as we delight in bird song or the wind in the trees. A walk, as Machado says, is a way into a new kind of seeing, hearing, sensing — in this workshop, a way out of our heads, away from our desks, and into poetry we make by walking.
For this two-hour poetry workshop, we’ll provide you with examples of poems of walking to discuss: Clare’s revelatory description in “Fox Fern;” how Mark Doty’s dog Beau brings him out of his mental fog into the now of “Golden Retrievals”; or A.R. Ammons’ awe of the universe at Cascadilla Falls.
We’ll provide suggestions you can use for reflection as you walk outside for a quarter of an hour or so.
In the second hour, we’ll gather back together to write, and talk about what we’ve written, with feedback from workshop leaders.
About the workshop leaders:
Zara Raab grew up in rural northern California, which she writes about in Swimming the Eel. Other books are Fracas & Asylum (David Robert Books, 2013), The Book of Gretel, and Rumpelstiltskin, or What’s in a Name? a finalist for the Dana Award. Her book reviews and poems have appeared in Verse Daily, River Styx, West Branch, Arts & Letters, Crab Orchard Review, Critical Flame, Prime Number, Raven Chronicles, and The Dark Horse. She was a contributing editor to Poetry Flash and The Redwood Coast Review, and is now settled in western Massachusetts.
Hilde Weisert is author of the 2015 The Scheme of Things (David Robert Books) and co-editor of the anthology Animal Companions, Animal Doctors, Animal People. Her poems have appeared in such journals as The Cincinnati Review, Prairie Schooner, and the Southern Poetry Review. She’s twice been a fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and was a Geraldine Dodge Poet in the Schools when she lived in New Jersey. Her “walking” poem, “The Pity of It,” won the Tiferet Journal 2016 Poetry Award. She’s participated in several BFWW poetry readings and other events over the last few years.