2023 Summer Workshops
According to author John Shoptaw, “an ecopoem needs to be environmental and environmentalist.” It needs more than “the vocabulary of nature.” Together we will examine the difference between ecopoetry and nature poems. What are the objectives of the pastoral poem? The anti-pastoral? Through reading the extraordinary work of poets for whom nature and society form the fulcrum of their work, we will generate our own work. Work that creatively addresses an appreciation for the garden to the wilds, as well as taking on critical issues such as climate change, the urban water crisis, and the “furious flower” of nature in creative and evocative ways in order to promote social and political change.
Vievee Francis is the author of The Shared World, which is forthcoming from Northwestern University Press; Forest Primeval (TriQuarterly Books, 2015), winner of the 2017 Kingsley Tufts Award; Horse in the Dark (Northwestern University Press, 2012), winner of the Cave Canem Northwestern University Press Poetry Prize; and Blue-Tail Fly (Wayne State University Press, 2006). Her work has appeared in numerous print and online journals, textbooks, and anthologies, including Poetry, Best American Poetry 2010, 2014, 2017, 2019, and Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry. She has been a participant in the Cave Canem Workshops, a Poet-in-Residence for the Alice Lloyd Scholars Program at the University of Michigan, and teaches poetry writing in the Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop (USA, UK, and Barbados). In 2009 she received a Rona Jaffe Writer’s Award, and in 2010, a Kresge Fellowship. She is the recipient of the 2021 Aiken Taylor Award for Modern American Poetry. Born in West Texas, she earned an MFA from the University of Michigan in 2009. She serves as an associate editor of Callaloo and an associate professor of English and Creative Writing at Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH.