Course Catalog

Poetics of Spirituality

What does spiritual poetry look like? Does it need to be informed by a particular religion? Is spirit the root of poetry? We’ll explore these questions and look at spiritual poetry, both ancient and contemporary, in the broadest sense, some attached to specific faith traditions and some not, from Classical Greek to Donne to Snyder, Native American, and more. We’ll write weekly in response to prompts informed by the ideas we’ll explore. All levels of writing and all beliefs welcome.

Hugo House is temporarily moving! May 19 is the last date Hugo House will hold classes at its current location. Starting May 20, Hugo House classes will be held at 1021 Columbia Street, Seattle, WA 98104.

This class will change locations in week 5.

Instructor: Judith Roche

Class Type: 6 Sessions

Start Date: 04/23/2016

End Date: 05/28/2016

Days of the Week: Saturday

Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Minimum Class Size: 5

Maximum Class Size: 15

$220.50 Member Price:
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$245.00 General Price:

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Judith Roche

Judith Roche is the author of three poetry collections, most recently Wisdom of the Body, an American Book Award winner. She has poems installed on several Seattle-area public art projects, has taught at various universities, and teaches poetry workshops throughout the country.

Teaching philosophy: My teaching philosophy is to met each student at his or her comfortable level and try to point out ways to extend that comfort level to gently and respectfully lead the student to try things he or she hasn’t thought of before. We all tend to write within our own conventions and I hope, by my exercises and suggestions, to facilitate students to surprise themselves by write something they might not have thought they would write. In other words, to break out of their own conventions, while assisting them to write further and deeper into what they are already passionate about..

Writers I return to: Blake, Whitman, Keats, H.D., Bob Hicock, Dorianne Laux, Sharon Doubiago, Anne Carson, Lorca, Hugo, Roethke, Richard Wilber, Robert Duncan, Michael Palmer, Sherman Alexie. As you can see, my aesthetic is all over the place in terms of poetic lineage but I teach (and read) what has really spoken to me and that’s what I want to pass on.

Favorite writing advice: A famous poet once told me to “go against the grain” and I’ve listened to that advice, which did extend my writing chops. Another famous poet told me to follow your obsessions. It’s that combination, which could be taken as contradictory, but really isn’t. To follow your obsessions but find new ways to talk about what you are really passionate about that makes for fresh and surprising writing.

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