Squirrel Hill
Poetry Workshop
“It is difficult
   to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
   for lack
     of what is found there.”
            — W. C. Williams
Photo of poetry journals

Workshop Process

Poets bring copies of their poem to pass among the group and read the poem aloud. Others respond with discussion and constructive critique. The premise of this process is that writers can gain clarity in achieving their vision from hearing what other serious writers have to say about their work.

This isn’t a teacher-student dynamic, rather it’s an interaction among equals as self-directed writers. We strive to acknowledge the strengths of a poem, with the thought that we often learn and gain helpful encouragement from sincere positive comment. Naturally, the commentary also frequently includes suggestions for revision, presented in the spirit of communal striving to achieve the best possible work.

Along with verbal comment we return the reader’s printed poem with written comment.

We read every attending poet’s work, and we monitor the time closely to make that possible.