Toolkits: Poetry

A mentoring partnership between Express Media and Australian Poetry

Facilitator: Melody Paloma is a poet and critic currently living on the far south coast of NSW. Among other publications, her work has appeared in Cordite, Rabbit, Plumwood Mountain, un Magazine, and the 2016 Hunter Anthology of Contemporary Australian Feminist Poetry. Melody was the recipient of the 2014 Overland Judith Wright Poetry Prize for New and Emerging Poets. Her debut collection In Some Ways Dingo was released earlier this year as part of the Rabbit Poets Series. @melody_paloma

Program Outline for Toolkits: Poetry 2017

Tuesday July 4 | Week 1: What Is Poetry? 
What does poetry look like? We’ll focus on the vast and differing forms poetry can take, appreciating the scope of the poetic form and learning to identify what makes an individual poem tick. 
Tuesday July 18 | Week 2: Language and Poetry 
How does poetry use language differently than other forms of creative writing? What makes a poem a poem? Why do we write poetry? We’ll discuss the distinctive and varied approaches to reading and writing poetry.  
Tuesday August 1 | Week 3: Aboriginal Histories and Poetry with Evelyn Araluen

Why is it so important to create space for Aboriginal voices in our literary institutions? Join Evelyn Araluen to explore the history of Aboriginal writers in Australian literature; from ancestral songs and stories to contemporary poetics; and learn why everyone benefits from the ethical representation and reception of Aboriginal writing.

Link Toolkits Live.

Evelyn Araluen is a poet, activist, teacher, and researcher working with Indigenous Literatures at the University of Sydney. She is the coordinator of Black Rhymes Aboriginal Poetry Night in Redfern and has spoken at the Sydney Writers Festival, Newcastle Writers Festival, and the National Young Writers Festival. She is the 2017 winner of the Nakata Brophy Prize for Young Indigenous Writers, and her poetry and criticism has been published in Overland, Southerly, Rabbit, and Best Australian Poems 2016. Born on Dharug country, she is a descendant of the Bundjalung nation.

Tuesday August 15 | Week 4: Fiction vs Nonfiction Poetry 
While some poets write from life, others have devoted their practice to removing their craft entirely from their own identities; creating pen names or fictitious literary selves. This week we’ll look at what it means to write fiction and nonfiction in poetry, in its blurry and multiple forms. 
Tuesday August 29 | Week 5: Poetry and Visual Art with Bella Li

The relationship between poetry and visual art has a long and expansive history. This week we’re talking collaboration, interdisciplinary approaches and ekphrasis with Bella Li, to consider the various ways in which we can develop our poetry practice through incorporating the visual.

Bella Li is the author of Maps, Cargo (Vagabond Press, 2013), shortlisted for the Wesley Michel Wright Prize, and Argosy (Vagabond Press, 2017)—a book of poetry, photography and collage. Her writing has been published in journals and anthologies such as Meanjin, Cordite, The Kenyon Review and Best Australian Poems. She is a managing co-editor at Five Islands Press, a co-curator and editor at Photodust, and co-editor of The Slow Canoe Live Journal and Press.

Tuesday September 12 | Week 6: Editing and Publishing Poetry 

Learning how to edit your own poetry is an integral part of being a poet, and knowing how to get your work out into the world is essential. We focus on the nitty gritty of how to edit and publish your work, from DIY chapbooks, blogs and zines, to the 101 of poetry journals. Our final week is all about taking your poetry from your desk to the people.