Practicing the Poetics of Space

How are we intimately connected with the spaces we inhabit? And how can poetry reveal to us the domestic places we dwell in? Using Gaston Bachelard’s seminal 1958 text The Poetics of Space as a scaffolding from which to conceive of new written work, this workshop asks students to examine the generative qualities and resonances of the nooks where text, memory and visualization converge and separate. Combining elements of seminar, lab and workshop, students will develop a series of written works that will be created in conversation with texts and objects. We invite writers of all disciplines and abilities to investigate corners, attics, holes (through readings, prompts, memory games and visual exercises) and discover together the ways in which such spaces are shaped through reverie and the poetic imagination. No visual art experience is required!

Workshop Details


Emily Skillings is the author of Fort Not (The Song Cave, 2017), which Publishers Weekly called a “fabulously eccentric, hypnotic, and hypervigilant debut,” as well as two chapbooks: Backchannel (Poor Claudia) and Linnaeus: The 26 Sexual Practices of Plants (No, Dear/ Small Anchor Press). Recent poems can be found or are forthcoming in Poetry, Harper’s, Boston Review, Brooklyn Rail, BOMB, Hyperallergic, LitHub and Jubilat. The recipient of a 2017 Pushcart Prize, Skillings is a member of the Belladonna* Collaborative, a feminist poetry collective, small press and event series. She received her MFA from Columbia University, where she was a creative writing teaching fellow, and has taught creative writing elsewhere at Yale University, Parsons School of Design and Poets House.


Simone Kearney is the author of My Ida (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2017) and In Threes, a limited edition artist chapbook (Minute BOOKS, 2013). She was a 2014 recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship in poetry, and a 2010 recipient of an Amy Award from Poets & Writers. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Hunter College and an MFA in painting from the Maryland Institute College of Art. She has been awarded residencies at the Lighthouse Works, the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation, the Edward F. Albee Foundation, the Woodstock Brydcliffe Guild, and Ragdale. She currently teaches at Parsons School of Design and Ramapo college.