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Poetry as Prayer: Generative Workshop

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CourseGraphic “two rivers deepening into one; less said, more meant…” - Gwyneth Lewis, from “Homecoming” Where Do Poetry and Prayer Converge? The invitation of this course comes from a place of wide questions and curiosity rather than answers and certainty. How might we explore and make strange the gorgeous and wild ways we can use poetry writing as prayer to attend to our lives, the lives of others, and the life of the world? In what Simone Weil called, “absolutely unmixed attention,” we will hold together the craft of poetry alongside the quest of our unique meaning-making in prayer. What to Expect from Each Session This is a five-week generative writing workshop focused on the creation of poetry through discussion, reading poems, and responding to writing prompts together. Each session will be shaped by a particular theme. The immense and diverse traditions of prayer offer us many forms, sounds, and modes to write in: antiphony, psalms of lament and praise, dialogue, petition, healing, release, desire, gratitude, paying attention, love, witness, etc. We will explore how contemporary poets play with this richness by reading and enjoying poems by Naomi Shihab Nye, Joy Harjo, Denise Levertov, Said, Marie Howe, John O’Donohue, Lorna Goodison, Ross Gay, Pádraig O’ Tuama, Mary Oliver, Jane Hirshfield, and more. Using writing prompts each session we’ll seek to generate material for new poems in a spirit of experimentation and playfulness. Our final session will be spent witnessing new poems we’ve written.

June 11th - July 16th, 2024
Tuesdays, 10:00am - 12:00pm EST 
On Campus 

Who should take this class?

This class is designed for poets of all experience levels. Whether you come from a faith tradition or none, all pilgrims of mystery are welcome and have wisdom to share. The course will be conducted in a spirit of openness, playfulness, and curiosity around both the craft of poetry and practices of prayer.

"Brittany is AMAZING. The thoroughness and rigor partnered with such grace and attentiveness."

“I would take any writing class Brittany ever offers. Her preparation and her presence were top rate.”

Class Details

5 Session(s)
Weekly - Tue

Sarah Lawrence College - Wrexham

Brittany Deininger 



Schedule Information

Skip dates: (No class on 07/02/2024)

Date(s) Class Days Times Location Instructor(s)
6/11/2024 - 7/16/2024 Weekly - Tue 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Bronxville, Sarah Lawrence College - Wrexham  Map Brittany Deininger