Seeing and Writing the World

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Seeing and Writing the World: Donna Isaac


Octavio Paz said this about poet Elizabeth Bishop: “She had a good ear, but most important was her ‘eye’–she could see, could describe what she saw.” In this world of distractions, how do we declutter our minds and really see the nuanced details of the real world? How does what we choose to see or not see inform our work?

This class, open to teens and adults, will explore the importance of seeing with both our real and mind’s eye so that we focus and create the best images for our readers. The instructor will include exploration of writers and artists who have literally been affected by vision disorders and also on writers who have touched on the idea of “seeing”; the role of connecting the literal and the figurative; ways to sharpen what we see in the world;  a focus on poetry and prose that utilizes a Bishopian “eye”; and writing prompts with sharing and discussion to practice the lessons. In short, this class explores how we see the world in order to capture the best details, images/figurative language in our poetic or other writing work, including explorations of the role of sight in some writers’ lives.

A packet of readings and practices will be provided. Bring pen and paper to class. Please register below to reserve your spot. Limited to the first 20 sign-ups.