Poetry: Betsy Sholl

July 24 – 30

Where Have We Come From? Where Are We Going? – A writing retreat gives us time to reflect on what we have done and to explore new ways of writing. In this workshop we will write new poems in response to prompts, and also consider ways to play with unfinished drafts. There will be daily writing prompts to generate new work, and also time given to drafts brought from home, poems in process, not yet completed, whose potential we can explore. We will discuss sample poems each day, do writing prompts together and also have writing assignments to work on individually. We will also explore the creativity of revision. In The Triggering Town, Richard Hugo says, “When you start to write, you carry to the page one of two attitudes, though you may not be aware of it. One is that all music must conform to truth.  The other, that all truth must conform to music.” Hugo also says that the job of the imagination is to find the unknown within the known. Through the lens of imagination, we will explore these relationships- the known and the unknown, music and our sense of truth, or how we move through the subject matter of our poems. All levels are welcome.

Betsy Sholl is the author of eight collections of poetry, most recently Otherwise Unseeable (University of Wisconsin Press, 2014), which won the 2015 Maine Literary Award for Poetry. Her work has also been included in several anthologies, including Letters to America, Contemporary American Poetry on Race, Best American Poetry, and Best Spiritual Writing, and in a range of journals, including Field, Triquarterly, and the Kenyon Review. She was a founding member of Alice James Books and published three of her earlier collections with them. She has received numerous awards including a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and two Maine Writer’s Fellowships. She has been a visiting poet at the University of Pittsburgh and Bucknell University and served as Maine’s Poet Laureate from 2006 to 2011. She lives in Portland, Maine, and teaches in the MFA in Writing Program of Vermont College of Fine Arts.

betsysholl.com