Poetry and the Unconscious: Seminar with Dana Levin
Time & Location
About the Event
“Life’s nonsense pierces us with strange relation,” writes poet Wallace Stevens. In this seminar, we will explore how to “make sense” of poetry’s relationship to the unconscious and the use we can make of this relationship for poetic composition and revision. A short lecture will focus on what poems and poets can learn from divination, reverie, dream; on pattern recognition as the foundation for both dream-work and writing-work; and on “revising towards strangeness” (Brenda Hillman). We’ll look at a dream record of a patient, by pioneering Jungian analyst Marie-Louise Von Franz, as well as poems by Tomaz Salamun, Charles Simic, and Jean Valentine. Then we’ll dive into doing some generative writing, with some tricks for by-passing that pesky inner critic.
Registration Information TBD.
Dana Levin is the author of five books of poetry, most recently Banana Palace (Copper Canyon Press, 2016) and Sky Burial (Copper Canyon Press, 2011), which The New Yorker called “utterly her own and utterly riveting.” Her poems and essays have appeared in Best American Poetry, The New York Times, The American Poetry Review, The Nation, Poetry, and Guesthouse, among other publications. Levin is a grateful recipient of many fellowships and awards, including those from the National Endowment for the Arts, PEN, the Witter Bynner Foundation and the Library of Congress, as well as from the Lannan, Rona Jaffe, Whiting and Guggenheim Foundations. Levin currently serves as Distinguished Writer in Residence at Maryville University in St. Louis, where she lives. Copper Canyon Press will publish her fifth book of poems, Now Do You Know Where You Are, in Spring 2022.