From Dabbling to Diving: Writing Poetry with Mark Granier
Date: October 14, 2021
Time: 2.00pm – 4.00pm
Duration: 8 weeks
Level: Beginner | Emerging |
Cost: €240 (€220 Members)
All Irish Writers Centre remote courses take place on Irish Standard Time (GMT)
Patrick Kavanagh once wrote: ‘I dabbled in verse and it became my life.’ Have you ever dabbled and wanted to take it further? Have you read a poem that moved or excited you and thought to yourself: ‘That’s amazing! How is it done or could I do it?’
Ever wondered what the purpose of rhyme is, or why some poets still use it (and many don’t), or what makes poetry different from prose? Or why line-breaks are important (except when they’re not)? If you’re a beginner, or someone who has written (and maybe even published) some poetry and is now looking for direction and feedback from others at a similar stage, this course is for you.
Apart from the basics (breaking into the blank page with triggering exercises etc.), you will look at a number of poems by established poets whose methods and techniques will be discussed. The emphasis will be on producing something new and surprising, having an adventure with language. Topics covered will include one of the oldest poetic devices (parallelism) that is still in use, riddles, the sonnet, imagery, metaphor, haiku/imagism and the prose poem. Advice will be given on publishing (online and in journals) and a short bibliography of useful books/anthologies. But lest that sounds too academic, it should be noted that the emphasis will be on having an adventure with language (in other words pleasure, or simply fun).
Mark Granier has an MA in Poetry from Lancaster University, and has been teaching poetry and creative writing for The Irish Writers’ Centre’s New Irish Communities project and University College Dublin’s Lifelong Learning Department for many years. His awards include the 1997 New Writer Prize, several Arts Council Bursaries, The Vincent Buckley Poetry Prize and two Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Fellowships. His fifth collection, Ghostlight: New & Selected Poems, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2017.
In 2004 I attended the Listowel Poetry Workshop led by the poet Mark Granier. He was a wonderful and insightful mentor and helped bring the very best out of each and every participant in a sensitive and imaginative way. I brought a very early draft of a poem of mine to the workshop. With the help of Mark and the other members of the group this poem became one of the strongest I had ever written and later appeared in the Irish Times and in my 2005 collection, Heather Island published by Salmon.