Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity…(a)bsolutely unmixed attention is prayer.
Taking Simone Weil’s concept of attention as a starting point for discussing poetry in relation to dailiness, students will forge a civic (public) poetry grounded in close attention to their own being in the world. Through engagement with writers such as Sean Bonney, Cody-Rose Clevidence, Anaïs Duplan, Édouard Glissant, Fanny Howe, Benjamin Krusling, Audre Lorde, Bernadette Mayer, D. A. Powell, Stacy Szymaszek and Simone White, and by utilizing forms ranging from the epistolary to the diaristic, list poems to lyric verse, our writing will ask what’s at stake in a poem if not “What will we eat? Where will we sleep and who are we sleeping with? How will we survive various precarities with dignity and intention?” By workshop’s end, students will have produced a varied, highly intimate, yet decidedly social body of work, indulging the body and its many sites vis-a-vis lists, letters, lyrics and self-determined forms.
imogen xtian smith is a poet and performer. Their work has appeared in Folder, B L U S H, tagvverk, the Rumpus and Peach Mag, as well as We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics. A 2021-22 Emerge Surface Be Fellow at the Poetry Project, their first book, stemmy things, debuts this fall from Nightboat Books. imogen lives and works in Lenapehoking / Brooklyn.