I loved that your workshop took me out of my head, where I seem to have been stuck recently, and back into my body. It was a wonderfully different approach to writing and gave me the chance to play. Thank you so much! 

Workshop participant, Falmouth University, 2016

Em offers full-day workshops in Embodied Poetry to a maximum of 10 participants. These are introductory days, stepping-stones to a deeper immersion in 3-day residential workshops on the Isle of Lismore.

There is particular focus on

  • Sound – where and how do words resonate in the body? ‘Hearing is a physical response, not just an intellectual one’ (Fran Quinn).
  • The visual – what does it mean to see? How do we experience perception, and what role do our eyes play in this?
  • Somatic awareness – what does the body tell us about the poem, before we’ve even finished reading it?
  • Movement – what happens to language when we embody its shape or dance its meaning?

If you’re holding your breath in any way, a part of you is not present.

Kristin Linklater, Freeing the Natural Voice

The discussion and analysis of poems form part of the workshops, but emphasis is placed not just on an intellectual understanding, but also on an embodied experience: how do poems make a connection with our blood, our hearts, our breath? How can poems help us to see more clearly?

‘Seeing’ and experiencing poetry in an embodied way can transform the way we approach writing practice, and enable the poet to access his or her own unique, authentic voice.

Teaching any kind of writing is largely a matter of helping the student develop the habit of art. I think this is more than just a discipline, although it is that; I think it is a way of looking at the created world and of using the senses so as to make them find as much meaning as possible in things.

Flannery O’Connor, Mystery And Manners

Workshops take place in Edinburgh and Glasgow, and the Isle of Lismore. If you’re interested in participating, please complete the below contact form for further details.

Upcoming 2019 workshops include:
April 24-28, Isle of Lismore residential, fully booked
October 30-Nov 3rd, Isle of Lismore residential
June 8th, Puppet Lab, Edinburgh, fully booked

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