Poetry workshop with Gabrielle Bates
In this workshop, we will read and comment on each other's submitted drafts, using descriptive—rather than prescriptive—feedback to illuminate generative possibilities for revision. Our goal will be to empower revisions that honor authorial individuality and ambition, while pushing language towards resonance, clarity, and meaningful risk. I will provide a short list of poetic terms before our first meeting, so that we can begin with some shared vocabulary, and I will open most classes with a brief craft discussion, using a handout of published poems to illustrate various elements.
Most classes will begin with a brief craft discussion, led by the instructor, using a handout of published poems to illustrate various craft elements. Then we will workshop participant poems one at a time, giving equal time to each draft.
Before the first class, I will ask that you familiarize yourself with a short list of poetic terms. Each participant will also be invited to bring in a poem they love—written by someone other than themselves—to share as part of our introductions on the first day.
The only supplies necessary to this class are something to write with and something to write on.
While this workshop is ideal for people with some previous experience writing, revising, and workshopping poems, all experience levels are welcome. If you want to deepen your understanding of poetic craft and push your own drafts in directions of resonance, clarity, and meaningful risk, this class is for you!
About the Instructor
Gabrielle Bates is the author of the poetry collection Judas Goat (Tin House, 2023), a New York Times Book Review 'The Shortlist' pick and a Chicago Review of Books "must-read" book of 2023. Originally from Birmingham, Alabama, Bates currently lives in Seattle, where she works for Open Books: A Poem Emporium and co-hosts the podcast The Poet Salon. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, Ploughshares, and BAX: Best American Experimental Writing, among other journals and anthologies, and she has received fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, the Sewanee Writers' Conference, Hugo House, and elsewhere. She has served as poetry faculty for a variety of universities, arts organizations, and museums, including the University of Washington Rome Center, the Rosenbach Museum, and the Tin House Writers' Workshops.