Sep 10

Great American Poems

Andrew Klein, Ph.D.

Some people are afraid of poetry. They find it too difficult, and too abstract. Others are embarrassed by it. They find that, even when recollected in tranquility, the poet’s spontaneous overflow of powerful emotion is a bit much. Even those who may have once been enchanted by it, now know it mostly as the section of the New Yorker they skip over. This class will try to prove that poetry is neither too difficult nor too embellished. Moreover, it will try to prove that it is an essential, offering us insights and truths that rarely surface in official discourse. Indeed, as the good doctor William Carlos Williams wrote in his long, late poem Asphodel, That Greeny Flower, while it “is difficult to get the news from poems,” “men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there.” This class will help you to discover this “news that stays new.”

Each week will focus on a given theme in American poetry. The instructor will provide the class with a selection of poems to read beforehand. He will provide a lecture on that week’s theme and an introduction to each of the poems under discussion. Then we will all share our observations about what we’ve read, helping each other to understand the music, meaning, and mystery of poetry.

Course Schedule | Tuesdays
Sept 10: Odes to Common Objects | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Sept 24: An Order Held in Constant Change | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Oct 08: The Animal That Therefore I Am | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Oct 22: Songs of Self | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Nov 05: Songs of Others | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Nov 19: Songs Without Speakers | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

This class will be held in-person at WIH and simulcast via Zoom



Class Tuition

39 in stock

Price is per student. Class tuition is non-refundable.