Leaps and Swerves: Creating Surprise in Poetry
Let’s explore unexpected moves in poems: disruptions to syntax, shifts in tone, and associative leaps. Get ready for in-class prompts that invite a sense of wildness and surprise to our writing. Together, we'll investigate how poets such as Carl Phillips, Gabrielle Calvocoressi, Matthew Olzmann, Rick Barot, and Elizabeth Bishop use craft strategies to establish an interplay between stabilizing and destabilizing forces in their work while engaging the reader in a journey of discovery.
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Dilruba Ahmed is the author of Bring Now the Angels (Pitt Poetry Series, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020). Her debut book of poetry, Dhaka Dust (Graywolf Press), won the Bakeless Prize. Her poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Kenyon Review, New England Review, Ploughshares, and Poetry. Her poems have also been anthologized in The Best American Poetry 2019 (Scribner), Halal If You Hear Me (Haymarket Books), Literature: The Human Experience (Bedford/St. Martin’s), Indivisible: An Anthology of Contemporary South Asian American Poetry (University of Arkansas), and elsewhere. Ahmed is the recipient of The Florida Review’s Editors’ Award, a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Memorial Prize, and the Katharine Bakeless Nason Fellowship in Poetry awarded by the Bread Loaf Writers Conference. She holds degrees from the University of Pittsburgh and Warren Wilson College’s MFA Program for Writers.
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