Poetry: Writing Truth in a Time of War

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Poetry: Writing Truth in a Time of War

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Tolstoy declared in War and Peace, Volume II, that his aim was to blur the line between fiction and history in order to get closer to the truth. Since that time, “the truth” has undergone much interrogation and transformation, particularly in our recent political atmosphere.

In this class, we will investigate the extremes of “war” and “peace,” and we will examine how the Truth operates in poetry. As a class, we will read poems that confront violence, aggression, and disjunction, while juxtaposing those with poems that are shaped by silence, soul-speaking, and meditation. This includes writing that is, to some degree, at war with itself, as well as writing that comes from a peaceful heart.

Through this generative workshop, we will delve into the question, “Is extreme rhetoric—violent or peaceful—a signature of the times we live in? And if so, how can we respond?” We will read excerpts from the texts of many great poets both past and contemporary—Anna Ahkmatova, Lucille Clifton, Kazim Ali, Traci Brimhall, and more—to help us closer examine the burning question inside our poetics: what is it about the quiet at the center of the proverbial storm?

  • Instructor: Meg Wade

  • Length of workshop: 6 weeks

  • Date: Tuesday, Apr. 30 - Jun. 4

  • Time: 7 - 9 pm

  • Location: Porch HQ
    2811 Dogwood Pl.
    Nashville, TN 37204

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Meg Wade is a 2017 National Poetry Series finalist. She is a former Poetry Fellow at the University of Wisconsin's Creative Writing Institute, and her manuscript, Slick Like Dark, won the 2017 Snowbound Chapbook Award, forthcoming from Tupelo Press. She has been the recipient of an Academy of American Poets Prize and her poems have appeared in CutBank, Pinwheel, Linebreak, and Nashville Review, among other journals and anthologies. She lives and writes in Nashville.