Saturday, June 23, 2012

Naropa SWP Week One 2012

June 11-June 17
Week One
Archival Poetics and The War on Memory
With current political discourse so far from truth and accountability, and the problem of master narrative in versions of history, how does the notion of Archive figure in our poetic sensibility? Archive is an inscription on our psyches, it struggles to preserve and nurture what might otherwise be lost and buried. It foregrounds imagination, candor, spontaneous discourse and the vibrational artifacts of our work as active writers – manuscripts, correspondence, research, intellectual exchange, small press and the oral record. Archivapoeia is a deeply engrained ethos of the Kerouac School, and co-founder Allen Ginsberg saw it as an antidote to memory loss perpetuated by the oligarchs and plutocrats. We will focus this week on our “memory banks” as writers. What are the sources and texts and ideas we cherish? How do we work with rescuing the work of others, and consider the technologies for future preservation?

Non-credit Course #: WRI 051, tuition: $475 per week

WRI 451, tuition: $1350 per week

WRI 751, tuition: $1800 per week

Charles Alexander Search & Rescue
In the SWP Print Shop, students will work with text from their own archive, i.e. "sources and texts" they cherish, or perhaps have just discovered, and want to share with others. To share, students will set short texts in type, print, and send. Postcards will be the preferred form, though standards will be driven through, crossed over, broken and reconstructed, as students take archival texts and "make it new." Bring stamps and pre-stamped postcards, my friends. While in the studio we will read selected archival pieces the instructor brings, as well as a masterpiece of survival and reconjecturing the past/present, H.D.'s Trilogy.

Charles Alexander's books include Hopeful Buildings (Chax 1990), Arc of Light / Dark Matter (Segue 1992), Near or Random Acts (Singing Horse 2004), Certain Slants (Junction 2007), the recent Pushing Water (complete) (Cuneiform 2011), as well as nine chapbooks. He has taught several times at Naropa SWP, and teaches at the University of Arizona South. He is the founder and director of Chax Press, in Tucson, where he lives with the visual artist Cynthia Miller.

Rebecca Brown From Biography to Fiction
This course looks at why and how to turn the material of other peoples’ lives (letters, pictures, laundry lists, rumors, detritus) into fiction, poetry, hybrid and cross-genre art. How research, erasure, invention and theft can help us remember, honor, critique or talk back to our forebears and ourselves. Authors whose work we might read include Woolf, Ondaatje, Schaeppi, Sante, Nelson, others. Students will write lots of new work. All levels and genres welcome.

Rebecca Brown is the author of twelve books, most recently American Romances (City Lights, 2009) winner of a Publishing Triangle Award. Other titles include The Terrible Girls, The Gifts of the Body, The Last Time I Saw You, and The Dogs. She has written for dance, theater and the visual arts. Her work has been translated into Japanese, German, Italian, etc. She lives in Seattle and teaches at Goddard College in Vermont and elsewhere.

Brenda Coultas The Poetics of Retrieval
Although an event maybe hidden, it is never lost for its life force resonates in our bones. In this course we will subvert the dominant narrative by diving beneath the surface. With the tools of investigative poetics, students will craft and gather materials to shape a people’s narrative of resistance. Readings include: Stacy Szymaszek, Jena Osman, David Wojnarowicz, Claudia Rankine, Tonya Foster, Ed Sanders, and Anne Waldman.

Brenda Coultas is the author of The Marvelous Bones of Time (2008) and A Handmade Museum (2003) from Coffee House Press, which won the Norma Farber Award from The Poetry Society of America, and a Greenwall Fund publishing grant from the Academy of American Poets. She has received a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship (NYFA) and a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council residency (LMCC). Coultas recently served as visiting poet at Long Island University in Brooklyn New York. Her poetry can most recently be found in The Brooklyn Rail, Witness and Court Green. The hybrid nature of her long projects allow her to peel back layers of the past by coming at the subject of her gaze from all directions. The subjects of the gaze may include ghosts, the Bowery, Underground Railway stations, water tables and anarchist heroes.

E. Tracy Grinnell Re-membering Dismemberment /
Dis-membering Rememberment
“Recognizing and accepting our own fragmentation and the inevitably fragmented past…has implications for how we treat bodies of poetry, bodies in poetry, and bodies in the world.” – Page duBois
In this workshop, we will look at formally explorative poetries that incite our engagement with the fragmented and unknown in our personal and collective pasts. We will consider the archive – as memory, as corpus, as assembly – as site – for experimentation with form. Texts by Sappho, M. NourbeSe Philip, Leslie Scalapino, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, among others.

E. Tracy Grinnell is the author of Helen: A Fugue (Belladonna Elder Series #1, 2008), Some Clear Souvenir (O Books, 2006), and Music or Forgetting (O Books, 2001), in addition to several limited edition chapbooks, including Leukadia (Trafficker Press, 2008) and Humoresque (Blood Pudding/Dusie #3, 2008). She has taught creative writing at Pratt Institute and Brown University. She lives

HR Hegnauer Archival Publishing: The Limits of the Body
While considering Robert Gluck’s question, “What kind of representation least deforms its subject,” we might think of publishing as an extension of the body, and furthermore, “What are the limits of the body?” How can publishing serve this body while being an advocate for memory? We’ll focus on independent publishing as an archive of our time; we’ll research and create presses that have unique missions necessary for the writing that we create this week.

HR Hegnauer is the author of Sir (Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs, 2011). She is a freelance book designer and website designer specializing in working with independent publishers as well as individual artists and writers. Since graduating from the Kerouac School, HR has worked with over 350 writers and translators.

David Henderson We Are the Archive: Contextual Scripts
We will "play" with combos of manuscripts, correspondence, research, intellectual exchange, and the oral record, and document outcomes via very "small press" self-publication. For examples, parallels and inspiration we can look towards Amiri Baraka and Ed Dorn, Diane di Prima and H.D., and Bob Kaufman and D.H. Examples of current political discourse and their relationship to truth and accountability can contrast with individuals and/or groups in interpersonal experiences and their truth and accountability.

David Henderson's books of poetry include: De Mayor of Harlem and Neo-California. His biography: 'Scuse Me While I Kiss the Sky: Jimi Hendrix Voodoo Child is available in a new, revised, 30 year anniversary edition. His radio documentary on the Black Beat, Bob Kaufman, Poet is available through the Pacifica Archive. He is one of the founding members of the Society of Umbra, a seminal Black Arts Movement group.

Lisa Jarnot The Book Length Project
This course will be a starting point for students who would like to begin what Charles Olson called "a saturation job", ("Best thing to do is to dig one thing or place or [wo]man until you yourself know more abt that than is possible to any other [wo]man…(it might take 14 years). And you’re in, forever."). We'll look at conventional and unconventional research/foraging methods and we'll talk about data retention and the art of memory in the age of the quick-fix internet.

Lisa Jarnot is the author of four books of poetry including Night Scenes (Flood Editions) and a biography of the San Francisco poet Robert Duncan.

Dawn Lundy Martin Writing the Unutterable
During unending civil war, writes David Grossman, “The world […] become[s] increasingly narrow. So does the language that describes it.” When what seeks to be said is unsayable, how do we say it? What does language do when confronted with the impossibilities of death or trauma, or bliss or jouissance? Bring your fragmented utterances, your notes, diaries, failed poems, other incompletions to explore the limitations of, and potential for, language when it faces the unutterable.

Dawn Lundy Martin is the author of A Gathering of Matter / A Matter of Gathering (2007), winner of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize; Discipline (2011), selected by Fanny Howe for the Nightboat Books Poetry Prize; and Candy (Albion Books 2011). She is the co-founder of the Third Wave Foundation in New York, a member of the Black Took Collective, and is an assistant professor in the writing program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Prageeta Sharma Archival Theories and Emancipatory Practices
What if we look at poems as archival spaces: How can we translate them to
accommodate our poetic processes in relation to our own poetic memory and our own personalized archives full of the relics and philosophies we hold dear? We will look at content and form as it is shaped by collage, material, cultural, and nontraditional writing. We will collaboratively construct poems that are constituents of our collective and shielding symbols, dream-like imagery, practices, psychologies, mythologies,
aphorisms, theories and dogma. We will create poems and multi-media and
interdisciplinary work that enacts, and through our own attentiveness to them, poems and pieces that guide and embody our fascination with and connection to our own archival and poetic imaginations.

Prageeta Sharma is an associate professor of creative writing at the University of Montana. She is the author of Bliss to Fill (subpress books), The Opening Question and Infamous Landscapes (Fence Books). Her forthcoming collection of poems,Undergloom (Fence Books) will be published in 2013. She is the recipient of the 2010 Howard Foundation Fellowship.
Eleni Sikelianos Documagination

Eleni Sikelianos Documagination

What does the Document record that the Imagination can’t? What does the
Imagination perform that the Document is blind to? How do the two interact? In this workshop, we will play between the two, amid questions of acting upon history and its recordings as those histories act upon our physical, intellectual and spiritual bodies. What marks can we make on the document? What marks does it leave upon us? What is a document (court records, family photographs, geological formations, fossils)? What dissipates? What does not? Artists we might look to: Susan Howe, M. NourbeSe Philip, Richard Long, Brenda Coultas, Ana Mendieta, Ondaatje, Reznikoff, McPhee,James Stevens, and others. Eleni Sikelianos is the author of a book-length eco poem (The California Poem), as well as five other books of poetry and a hybrid memoir. She is a translator and translatee,and is a graduate and devotee of the Kerouac School.

Eleni Sikelianos is the author of a book-length eco poem (The California Poem), as well as five other books of poetry and a hybrid memoir. She is a translator and translatee, and is a graduate and devotee of the Kerouac School.

Stacy Szymaszek Histories of the Self
We’ll consider the unusual and elusive being we call “the self.” As poets, we transfer the tension between memory, imagination and desire into energy, and energy into the poem. We’ll use our memory banks to engage the moment of creation, without letting memory over-ride our writing. Is the self an artifact of language? What traces of ourselves will we leave for the record and who will follow them? Inhabiting “I” as a zone of being, rather than an identity, we’ll subvert antagonizing forces and create utopian dimensions. We’ll read a wide range of writers who have left histories of the self and write our own.

Szymaszek is the author of Pasolini Poems (Cy Press, 2005), Stacy S: Autoportraits (OMG! Press, 2008), Orizaba: A Voyage with Hart Crane (Faux Chaps, 2008), Emptied of All Ships (Litmus Press, 2005) and Hyperglossia (Litmus Press 2009), among other titles. She currently serves as Artistic Director for The Poetry Project at St. Mark's Church.

Steven Taylor Song Works
We use the Smithsonian Folkways Anthology of American Folk Music to model various song forms and genres. The class then becomes an ensemble where we collaborate on one another’s song writing efforts toward a weekend concert. No previous experience required. All you need is a willingness to sing.

Steven Taylor is a musician and writer based in Brooklyn, NY. He is the author of False Prophet: Fieldnotes from the Punk Underground and is a member of the Fugs.

Magdalena Zurawski The Forms of NowThis workshop begins with the assumption that poetry offers us an archive for investigating the relationship of the personal to the historical, the individual to the social. Poetic traditions present to us a record of human forms that history has made possible, forms that are inclusively political, personal, rational, sexual, emotional, spiritual, grammatical, and syntactical. In this workshop we’ll begin writing by considering both the life forms and poetic forms our “now” makes possible.

Magdalena Zurawski’s novel The Bruise won the Ronald Sukenick Prize for Innovative Fiction and the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Debut Fiction. She is currently writing a manuscript of poetry called, Dog is a Way of Thinking. A PhD candidate in American Literature at Duke University, she co-curates the Minor American Poetry Series in Durham, NC.

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