The poem on the table sometimes leads us into the wild blue yonder of larger concerns and sometimes leads us deeper and deeper into a single word on the page. This is a traditional critique-based workshop, but my approach is always language, the words on the page, one by one, as they take their walk. We will talk about three poems by each participant, spending approximately twenty minutes on each poem. Please bring, then, seventeen copies of three poems to the first meeting. Advice: don’t bring poems you are satisfied with; though I understand your desire to impress. Bring instead, poems you are worried about, ones you don’t know how to end, poems you feel uncannily unsettled by and that cause you to lose sleep or be embarrassed by. I am dedicated to the art of writing bad poems! There is no other way to move forward. There is no other way to be happy.
The Poem On The Table With Mary Ruefle