The form of the poem organizes our sensory and felt experience as we read. It supports and disrupts what the language is saying. The line slows the sentence down. The line makes a dance inside the sentence. The line breaks open the sentence. The line registers what the sentence tried to contain. The line takes a walk as Paul Klee described it in painting. And because the line can make these many moves it lets us do more with words than the sentence with its rules of grammar and conventions of speech can do. The repetition of lines in a poem, its form and body and interruption of space and time, allows for many patterns and connections to weave meanings of their own. Every different kind of line has a music and attitude that enters into what you are writing. These are simple experiments with line that will show you what is possible with the poetic line.
Week 1: Three lines: three poems
Week 2: Choosing a line
Week 3: The emerging line
Week 4: Holding the sentence open
Week 5: When the sentence behaves like a line
Week 6: The line takes a walk
Poet and psychodrama practitioner Brigid Yuknavitch develops and leads poetry and poetics workshops for Corporeal Writing. She has a 2006 book of poetry Lives of the Puzzleworkers, as well as work in the anthologies Pontoon and Northwest Edge. She has a Ph.d in English and American Literature with a specialization in poetry and poetics, as well as a M.A. in Jungian Clinical psychology; for her, the two go hand in hand because they are both deeply about the creative process and coming into language. She has taught Graduate Seminars on H.D., Dickinson, Sexton, Plath, Brigit Kelly, Olga Broumas, Joy Harjo, Anzaldua, Ai, Levertov, Brooks, Lorde, Hahn and Rich, and is a trainer, educator and practitioner in psychodrama and sociometry. Brigid has a private practice and continues to lead a variety of workshops in both areas. Her goal in her work at Corporeal Writing is to develop workshops that help artists get into a relationship with themselves so they can access their inner poetry and find where their bodies and language come together. Learn more at psycheshorse.com.