Poets and the Art of Writing Poetry

Poetry Central

You will find here all things on the art of writing poetry and poets, including a rich and varied mix of interviews, poetry book reviews, poetry prompts, and more.

Our Latest Poetry Features

Jeffrey Harrison

Jeffrey Harrison has appeared in Best American Poetry and The Pushcart Prize anthology. Read his poetry in WTP Vol. VII #7.

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Personal History and the Power of Repetition

Nathan McClain asks his writing students to introduce themselves via the poetic method of repetition known as anaphora, with a repeated phrase of their own choosing.

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Nathan McClain

WTP poet Nathan McClain speaks with poetry editor Sara London on fatherhood as inspiration, writing political poems, and his work at Hampshire College.

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Poetry Prompt

Personal History and the Power of Repetition

Personal History and the Power of Repetition

A Poetry Prompt from Nathan McClain Using as a template Gregory Pardlo’s “Written by Himself” (from his book Digest), in which variations of “I was born” begin many of the lines, McClain asks his writing students to introduce themselves via the poetic method of repetition known as anaphora, with a…
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One-on-One Poetry Intensives

Instructor: Sara London,

WTP Poetry Editor

This is a masterclass for anyone who has been writing poems and is eager to revise her/his/their way to even stronger work. Writing effective poems involves a uniquely delicate dance of control and surrender. An initial spark — an image, memory, idea, or language itself — may launch us on a poem with confidence, yet ultimately usher us toward some unexpected wilderness. How do we navigate that line of tension between clear purpose and a poem’s surprising wild side? How do we follow a path of compelling illumination and bring a poem to resonant conclusion? We’ll take a close look at matters of subject, imagery, diction, lineation, rhythm, tone, and more. Students will receive written feedback on work (submitted in advance), tips for future revisions, and reading recommendations. (Number of poems to be determined in pre-conference communication.)

(On acceptance you will be contacted by email to schedule a convenient meeting time.)


Sara London

Sara London headshot

Author of the poetry collections The Tyranny of Milk and Upkeep (forthcoming in 2019), both from Four Way Books. Her poems have appeared in The Hudson Review, Poetry East, The Iowa Review, the Poetry Daily Anthology, The Common, and many other journals. She is also the author of two children’s books, and has reviewed children’s literature for The New York Times Book Review. She earned an MFA at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and later worked at Scribner’s, as fiction editor at Seventeen magazine, and as poetry editor at Special Report. She teaches creative writing and literature at Smith College. www.saralondonwriter.com

Look for our own first WTP Selected Works edition, and a variety of titles and genres by our very own Woven Tale Press authors.