Office Hours: MWF 12-1pm @ 424 Carlisle Hall
The Making of a Poem
The Practice of Poetry
Overview: This course is designed to be an intensive practice in the craft of poetry and study of the creative process through close readings of poems, essays on craft, and the workshopping of students’ poems. Though the emphasis of this course is necessarily on craft, writing poems also means engaging with other (written, visual, aural, etc.) texts. That is, poetry has a relationship with the world.
Workshop: The rules for workshop are simple. Each student will bring copies of her or his poems to distribute in the class. The class will take these copies home and read/respond to them for the next class meeting (or the one after that, or the one after that; it depends on how quickly we move). When we get to your poem, you will read the poem out loud to the class, then shut up while we discuss it. You are not allowed to talk until we are finished, and even afterward you are only allowed to ask questions for clarification, etc. Each student should have workshopped six poems by the end of the semester.
Responses: Thorough, considered responses to poems to be workshopped are required before the poem is workshopped. That is, once you receive a poem, you should read it carefully, perhaps several times, and write detailed notes on the copy so that you will remember what you want to discuss in class. It is important to write your name at the top of the page and to save your responses. I will collect these and you will receive points based on how thorough and useful your responses have been.
Presentations: For most of the session, two students will work together for each class meeting to present general and detailed information about a given formal aspect of poetry. We will all read about that aspect in The Making of a Poem, but these brief, formal discussions will tell us more.
Each student will present a book of poetry by a single poet to the class. Biographical information may be important, but the presentation should focus on the craft of the poet and the organization of the book as a complete artifact. Examples of the poet’s work will be helpful, as well as a discussion of themes, tropes, images, stylistic components, etc. Accompanying the presentation should be a 3-4 page essay.
Grades: Your grade is based on the following point system:
10 points Forms Presentation
20 points Book Presentation
40 points 4 Exercises (4×10 points)
30 points Responses to others’ work
60 points Portfolio
40 points Attendance (0-1 absence receives 40 points, 2 gets 20 points, 3 gets 10 points, 4 gets 0, etc.)
200 points total, so:
181-200 points total: A
161-180 points total: B
141-160 points total: C
121-1140 points total: D
120 and below: F
Outcomes: To recognize the forms of poetry and be able to anayze a poem’s effectiveness in its own terms and in how it relates to the tradition; to produce poems that participate in the tradition while maintaining some unique quality; to practice both simple and wholesale revision.
Policies: A significant percentage of this course consist of workshopping each other’s poems; regular class attendance is necessary.
E-mail from students will only be addressed during regular office hours.
I will not accept assignments unless you have made arrangements with me in advance. In case of illness or emergency, please contact me as soon as possible.
All poems must be typed. Use basic fonts, no larger than 12 pt. Margins should be one inch. Titles are mandatory and fun. Be original and inventive. Always, always keep an extra hard-or-disk copy of your work.
You will be required to bring additional copies of your work for workshops. Please come to class with materials ready to distribute. We are all relying on each other.
Plagiarism will result in immediate failure.
Americans With Disabilities Act: The University of Texas at Arlington is on record as being committed to both the spirit and letter of federal equal opportunity legislation; reference Public Law 92-112 – The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. With the passage of federal legislation entitled Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), pursuant to section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, there is renewed focus on providing this population with the same opportunities enjoyed by all citizens.
As a faculty member, I am required by law to provide “reasonable accommodations” to students with disabilities, so as not to discriminate on the basis of that disability. Student responsibility primarily rests with informing faculty of their need for accommodation and in providing authorized documentation through designated administrative channels. Information regarding specific diagnostic criteria and policies for obtaining academic accommodations can be found at www.uta.edu/disability. Also, you may visit the Office for Students with Disabilities in room 102 of University Hall or call them at (817) 272-3364.
Drop Policy: Students may drop or swap (adding and dropping a class concurrently) classes through self-service in MyMav from the beginning of the registration period through the late registration period. After the late registration period, students must see their academic advisor to drop a class or withdraw. Undeclared students must see an advisor in the University Advising Center. Drops can continue through a point two-thirds of the way through the term or session. It is the student’s responsibility to officially withdraw if they do not plan to attend after registering. Students will not be automatically dropped for non-attendance. Repayment of certain types of financial aid administered through the University may be required as the result of dropping classes or withdrawing. For more information, contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships (http://wweb.uta.edu/aao/fao/).
Academic Integrity: Students enrolled in this course are expected to adhere to the UT Arlington Honor Code:
I pledge, on my honor, to uphold UT Arlington’s tradition of academic integrity, a tradition that values hard work and honest effort in the pursuit of academic excellence.
I promise that I will submit only work that I personally create or contribute to group collaborations, and I will appropriately reference any work from other sources. I will follow the highest standards of integrity and uphold the spirit of the Honor Code.
UT Arlington faculty members may employ the Honor Code as they see fit in their courses, including (but not limited to) having students acknowledge the honor code as part of an examination or requiring students to incorporate the honor code into any work submitted. Per UT System Regents’ Rule 50101, §2.2, suspected violations of university’s standards for academic integrity (including the Honor Code) will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct. Violators will be disciplined in accordance with University policy, which may result in the student’s suspension or expulsion from the University.
Student Support Services Available: : UT Arlington provides a variety of resources and programs designed to help students develop academic skills, deal with personal situations, and better understand concepts and information related to their courses. Resources include tutoring, major-based learning centers, developmental education, advising and mentoring, personal counseling, and federally funded programs. For individualized referrals, students may visit the reception desk at University College (Ransom Hall), call the Maverick Resource Hotline at 817-272-6107, send a message to email@example.com, or view the information at www.uta.edu/resources.
Electronic Communication: UT Arlington has adopted MavMail as its official means to communicate with students about important deadlines and events, as well as to transact university-related business regarding financial aid, tuition, grades, graduation, etc. All students are assigned a MavMail account and are responsible for checking the inbox regularly. There is no additional charge to students for using this account, which remains active even after graduation. Information about activating and using MavMail is available at http://www.uta.edu/oit/cs/email/mavmail.php.
Student Feedback Survey: At the end of each term, students enrolled in classes categorized as “lecture,” “seminar,” or “laboratory” shall be directed to complete an online Student Feedback Survey (SFS). Instructions on how to access the SFS for this course will be sent directly to each student through MavMail approximately 10 days before the end of the term. Each student’s feedback enters the SFS database anonymously and is aggregated with that of other students enrolled in the course. UT Arlington’s effort to solicit, gather, tabulate, and publish student feedback is required by state law; students are strongly urged to participate. For more information, visit http://www.uta.edu/sfs.
Emergency Exit Procedures: Should we experience an emergency event that requires us to vacate the building, students should exit the room and move toward the nearest exit. When exiting the building during an emergency, one should never take an elevator but should use the stairwells. Faculty members and instructional staff will assist students in selecting the safest route for evacuation and will make arrangements to assist handicapped individuals.
|Aug 26||Course introduction|
|Sept 2||NO CLASS|
|Sept 9||Discuss Midrash introduction
Discuss “Tradition and the Individual Talent”
Exercise #1 (Write a 10+ line, rigidly decasyllabic “poem”)
|Sept 16||“The Villanelle”
|Sept 23||“The Sestina”
|Sept 30||“The Pantoum”
Exercise #2 (Practice pg 46)
|Oct 7||“The Sonnet”
|Oct 14||“The Ballad”
|Oct 21||“Blank Verse”
|Oct 28||“The Heroic Couplet”
Exercise #3 (Practice pg 114-115)
|Nov 4||“The Stanza”
|Nov 11||“The Elegy”
Exercise #4 (Practice pg 227)
|Nov 18||“The Pastoral”
|Nov 25||“”The Ode“