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"Sometimes a poem comes to you as if gifted from some higher ground, the editing a truly playful part of the process that might involve minor squabbles with commas, or tiny words deleted here and there for rhythm, maybe a synonym or metaphor to strengthen language. Other times, poems can be unruly, and though what you want to say may be on the page, something’s not working and you don’t quite know what that ‘something’ is. The editing that comes then, for me, is the most playful part of the process. This is where I mess with form.

Form is an active part of a poem, not just an aesthetic. In this workshop we’ll look at how different forms DO different things within a poem and how messing around with form can strengthen other choices you make in the process. We’ll create new works, but to really get the point across, bring at least one poem you’ve lived with for a while and still can’t get a handle on – we’ll see if we can set it straight."

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Heather Taylor-Johnson lives and writes on Kaurna land near Port Adelaide. Her fifth poetry book is a verse novel called Rhymes with Hyenas and a new collection – Alternative Hollywood Ending – will be out in August. Her second novel, Jean Harley Was Here, was shortlisted for the Readings Prize for New Fiction. She writes about the body and about art, which are often the same thing, and is the editor of Shaping The Fractured Self: Poetry of Chronic Illness and Pain. Recent shortlistings include the Red Room Poetry Fellowship, ABR’s Calibre Prize and Island’s Nonfiction Prize. She’s an honorary title holder at the J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice.

Heather will be presenting in-person at Gorman House on Saturday, September 24th

from 09:00 - 11:00 AM!

Registration opening late August!