Another Ode to the Body: #instapoem and Print Poem

I am torn between which medium delivers this poem better; or rather, I am torn between what each medium gains, but then loses. You just can’t get the nod to Whitman’s long, overflowing lines in the #instapoem nor the sense of the tension between the arc of a sentence across …

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Shelley and Synergy: Semester Mantra, Spring 2017

Hark! the rushing snow! The sun-awakened avalanche! whose mass, Thrice sifted by the storm, had gathered there Flake after flake, in heaven-defying minds As thought by thought is piled, till some great truth Is loosened, and the nations echo round, Shaken to their roots, as do the mountains now.  Percy …

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Semester Mantra, Fall 2016

I wrote this blog-post a year ago, but have decided to use the quote by Cummings as a mantra for this semester. I am teaching “Ecopoetics in the Age of the Anthropocene” and a sampling of 20th Century American literature that focuses on trauma, healing, language, and consciousness. Therefore, wandering in …

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Literary #instaessays: Finding a Way

I am just starting to experiment in what could be called a literary‪ #‎instaessay‬–a compelling genre full of possibility. I have written a couple poem-essays on some images from The Emily Dickinson Archive. I am interested in what opens up in terms of circulation (and rhetorical velocity) when we have students …

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Negative Capability: Semester Mantra, Spring 2016

John Keats defines negative capability as the moment when one “is capable of being in uncertainties, Mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact & reason.” Difficult to do, but this semester, more than any other, I hope students linger in this space. I am teaching a course on Emily Dickinson. …

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