student poems

Students have the option in CL 206 of composing a poem in the style of a poet studied in the course for extra credit. (The other extra credit option involves a visit to the MFA.) The following students have graciously agreed for me to post their work to the blog; in some cases, students have agreed for me to post their work anonymously.

As part of this class, we think about how creative writing about classical subjects can open up new things about the ancient world, especially when it comes to women, who often come through in primary sources only in a distorted manner. Some students embraced the aesthetic of the fragmentary nature of Sappho and reproduced that fragmentary nature in their own poetry. The following examples, from Fall 2017, also show some other themes of the class: the power of translation from one language to another (e.g. Sappho ~ Catullus ~ Anne Carson); the power of poetry to communicate the personal, and to reveal issues of social justice (Rita Dove, Carol Ann Duffy).

I am very proud of all of the submissions I have received, and it demonstrates to me the kind of engagement that students can have when they are asked to take agency in their own writing.

FALL 2017

Kaitlyn Coulter (Sappho in English + Italian)

Kaitlyn Coulter Sappho Poem CL 206 Fall 2017


Christina Tavella (Sappho in Ancient Greek + English)

Christina Tavella Sappho Poem CL 206 Fall 2017

Robyn Volcy-Lee (Rita Dove)

Robyn Volcy-Lee Mother Mourning CL 206 Fall 2017

Anonymous (Rita Dove)Anonymous poem in style of Rita Dove CL 206 Fall 2017