Craft Lecture: Bewilderment is Another Word for Chills

Footscray Community Arts Centre


About the Course

In the first of a series of lectures on the craft of writing, poet Darlene Silva Soberano guides audiences through the act of close-reading and analysis of poetic technique. This lecture is for writers of any level, especially those interested in beginning or continuing a practice of writing poetry.?? 

Fanny Howe in her essay, Bewilderment writes: “What I have been thinking about, lately, is bewilderment as a way of entering the day as much as the work. Bewilderment as a poetics and an ethics.” A common charge against poetry is that it is difficult to read. Poetry’s cryptic nature often encourages analysis so that a reader may come to an understanding of a poem. “The sky is a symbol for the poet’s father and such comparison denotes the father’s authority,” one may write during a VCE Literature exam. Poetry?is undeniably bewildering—but such bewilderment is exactly the reason why many turn to poetry in the first place. There are poems that express bewilderment towards loneliness, or a family of mushrooms, or a first kiss, or the violence of war. If remaining unchanged in the face of cruelty is deeply inhumane, then how may a poetics of bewilderment aid in?defamiliarising?such violence? This lecture will look at poems that use techniques oriented around bewilderment to expose injustice, encourage compassion, and create lush turns of language.

This lecture with Darlene Silva Soberano will run on the 24th of October from 3pm-4pm.



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