Physical Poetry: Making Found Poems from Newspapers and Magazines with Leah Umansky (via Zoom)

Poetry finds you wherever you may be, in your kitchen, on a walk, at the supermarket, in the shower, or maybe when you are reading the paper, or a magazine. The great joy of a poem is that you never know when inspiration will strike!
Some poets start with an idea, others with a first line or title, but often the best poems come when there is less pressure. First, find the words that speak to you in a magazine or newspaper, cut them out, and paste them on a page to craft your poem.  This way, the language is first and the idea is secondary; however, the most important part is that  you are enjoying the physicality of the poem you are creating. Together, your eyes, your hands and your mind are working together to build something wonderful.
A fun way to craft a poem is to steal from a found source: a magazine or a newspaper. All artists steal; don’t be afraid.  In this generative workshop, we will be using your own found sources, (newspapers and magazines) to take found language to create our own  ‘found poems.’
By the end of the workshop, you will have several poems to choose from, but only time to workshop one.  Most of this workshop will be based around short poetry prompts, arranged mostly by topic, where you will use your newspaper or magazine to cut out words and phrases that speak to you.
Supplies: a clear surface, such as a table or desk, some paper, a scissor, and glue or tape, so you can create your found poems.

NB: This class will be taught on Zoom and will be capped at 15 students. Registrants will receive the Zoom link to the email address they use to register. It will arrive immediately after registration so please check your spam folder if you do not receive it. It will also be sent the day before class as a reminder. Please review the course policies page before registering for any classes. Please email ask@writerscenter.org with any questions.

The scholarship application for the Altman Person of Color Scholarships, Limp Wrist LGBTQIA+ Scholarships, and the Need-Based Scholarships will be available on May 1 and will be due on May 15 for all summer and fall classes.

Leah Umansky has been an English teacher for 15 years and has taught workshops to writers of all ages in such places as The Poetry School (UK), and Hudson Valley Writers Center as well as Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Visible Ink Program. She is also the author of two full length collections, The Barbarous Century (2018), Domestic Uncertainties (Blazevox, 2012), and two chapbooks, Straight Away the Emptied World (Kattywompus Press, 2016), and the Mad-Men inspired Don Dreams and I Dream (Kattywompus Press, 2014). Her writing has been widely published in such places as The New York Times, The Academy of American Poets’ Poem-A Day, USA Today, POETRY, Guernica, and American Poetry Review. She has been the host and curator of the NYC based poetry series COUPLET since 2011 and is a graduate of the MFA Program in Poetry at Sarah Lawrence College. She is also a collage-artist who has designed all of her book covers.

Event Location and Ticket Information

Date: Sunday, August 20, 2023
Times: 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm

Ticket pricing:

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Presenter: Leah Umansky