Writing Like an Animal: A Persona Poem Class with Gretchen Primack



The world is chock full of poems that treat animals like objects, vehicles, stepping stones—anything but vibrant individuals. Can we put work in the world that counters that? One way is through persona poems, poems in the voice of another, which focus us on their agency and selfhood. And writing from another perspective, including animals’ perspectives, can bridge so many divides. This two-part class will share the ins and outs of writing someone else, focusing on writing other species. We’ll read, pre-write, write, revise, and craft.

The class is designed for a range of experience levels, from writers of other genres to poets to literature appreciators who don’t have a poetry background at all. The first class will take 1 ½ hours (including a break). You’ll be introduced to persona poems and begin to write your own. The second class will be 2 ½ hours (including a longer break), and will involve deeper writing and crafting/revision.