Welcoming new poets & prompts

This week, the PhoneMe Project welcomed two new poets to our collective, as well as a new writing workshop leader for today’s session and next week’s! Danielle LaFrance, VPL librarian and poet (you can find her latest collection here: http://talonbooks.com/books/friendly-fire), prepared a few compelling writing prompts for our group that inspired some wonderful pieces this afternoon.

Danielle began by sharing some work and wisdom of poet CAConrad. She introduced us to his poetic practice of creating rituals for writing that focus largely on the body; he plays with how we might escape our minds somewhat through rituals that focus on physicality in order to ‘write the body’ and access our creativity.

Next, we read aloud CAConrad’s poem, “Every Feel Unfurl,” and spent a bit of time discussing its unique structure before engaging with our writing exercise. Danielle passed around maple candies for everyone, and invited us to look at the candy and think about a “gentle” memory. Next, we passed our candy to the person beside us before starting a timer for our writing. Once the poems were written, we poured back over them, searching for words and phrases throughout our pieces that resonated with us, circling those moments. Finally, we shared the ‘edited’ versions of our work, observing how the poetry fragments seemed reminiscent of fractured memories themselves.

Following CAConrad, we moved on to reading Joe Brainard’s piece, “Ten Imaginary Still Lifes.” Then, our challenge was to write a ten-line poem, with each new line beginning with the phrase “I close my eyes.” Though not all of us managed to reach ten lines, our poems were filled with gorgeous imagery, and we paused to comment and compliment one another on our work.

Finally, recorded a few of our poems from the workshop. We each took turns experimenting with the recording booth, and listened to one another’s contributions. By the end of the session, our group concluded with some spectacular audio pieces saved and ready to be prepared for potentially adding to our digital map.

Please feel very welcome to join us next week for the next PhoneMe Project session!

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