Keith Flynn offers weekend poetry workshop, March 13-15 in Marshall

Press release from Keith Flynn:

WHITE ROCK POETRY WORKSHOP with award-winning poet and editor KEITH FLYNN

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, March 13-15, 2020

Contact: (828) 450-0357 or


$300 for the weekend. Come in and meet at the Laurel Community Center on Friday, March 13 around noon, work 1-4, then dinner break and meet back at White Rock Hall for readings, conversation, cocktails. Saturday has two sessions, 10-1 and 2-5 at LCC, then dinner break and again meet back at White Rock for readings, discussion, cocktails again.

Meet Sunday 11-2 for a final session and then everyone heads out. There will be plenty of prompts, time to write and get responses from Flynn and the group. Focus will come from the text of The Rhythm Method, Razzmatazz, and Memory: How To Make Your Poetry Swing. Please see the outlines for the daily sessions listed below.

This lively course will use the Keith Flynn book of the same name as its core, and will be included with the price of the workshop.

If any participant already owns The Rhythm Method, they can substitute Flynn’s new collection of poetry, The Skin of Meaning, and those books will be distributed at the beginning of the session on Friday. Enrollment is limited and will not exceed 18 participants.

Participants are responsible for their own meals and housing. We will offer suggestions to local taverns and hotels who are offering reduced prices in association with this event.

As a general overview, the following segments will be covered, primarily as themes for the day’s writing, and each session will be filled with prompts and exercises to jump start each student’s creative imagination.

(1) THE RHYTHM METHOD: ADMITTING NO IMPEDIMENT —What separates poetry from other writing disciplines is its music. This exploration will focus on line structure and the aspects of language that help create inventive rhythm and flow.

(2) RAZZMATAZZ AND SOUL: POETRY AND THE SOURCES OF INSPIRATION—This session will include exercises on image association, how to improve the eye as well as the ear, and discussions about the history of Surrealism and its influences on contemporary culture, with an emphasis on descriptive language. Also, a discussion of the substance of Jack Spicer’s Magic Workshops.

(3) THE LONG BLUE LINE: THE SYNTHESIS OF THE SONG AND THE POEM—Part of the session will illustrate how the basic principles of songwriting and structure, melody and tempo, can help create flow and dynamism for the poetic process. The Beat poets and their spoken-word experiments will be discussed, as well as the lyrics of Robert Johnson, Willie Dixon, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, and the advent of slam poetry and hip hop culture as influences.

(4) INSPIRATION STATION: HONORING THE CONDENSARY— Condensation is the final frontier for a poet. This day’s discussion will be an editing overview, with an eye to polish the entire week’s production, including “Fifteen Rules to Write By,” the attention to the abiding image, and Olson’s Projective Verse, why Poetry is language with a shape.

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