We will mix writing with conversations about why we write. Loosely based on our reading of selected poems, there will be a set of widely (and wildly) varied writing prompts, with a limited amount of time to write. The process is designed to short-circuit self-censorship, thereby producing the most exciting work, meaningful to yourself and others. We’ll end with a longer assignment, designed to follow a core insight to its full implications. There will be laughter in this class, and possibly tears. Most of all, the class will stimulate and surprise you, and inspire both your future writing and your future teaching.
Alicia Ostriker has published nineteen collections of poetry, been twice nominated for the National Book Award, and has twice received the National Jewish Book Award for Poetry, among other honors. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Yale Review, American Poetry Review, Best American Poetry, The Atlantic, Prairie Schooner, and other journals, and has been translated into numerous languages, including Hebrew and Arabic. Her most recent collections of poems are Waiting for the Light and The Volcano and After: Selected and New Poems 2002–2019. She was New York State Poet Laureate from 2018–2021 and a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 2015–2020. She lives with her husband in New York City.