Teaching

I am available for readings, workshops, private mentoring, & manuscript consultations. My only regret in retirement is missing my students–so poets at all levels welcome! I also love collaborating with visual artists, book-makers & paper-makers. Contact me.

My MFA thesis advisees have published widely and won both regional and national prizes for their first books, including the Yale Younger Poets Series, the Walt Whitman Award from the Academy of American Poets, the Cleveland State University First Book Prize, the Srinivas Rayoprol Poetry Prize (India), and the Washington Writers Publishing House Poetry Prize (twice). Others have received generous financial aid to pursue the PhD in Poetics, Literature, and Creative Writing; founded literary journals and presses; and found careers at institutions as diverse as The Library of Congress and the Environmental Defense Fund.

My BA, BFA, and Honors students have continued into graduate study, professional writing & editing, poetry therapy, and other writer-centric lives. George Mason is a highly diverse university, so one of the pleasures of teaching there was working with immigrant, first-generation, and multi-lingual writers, as well as adult students, military veterans, and LGBT/non-binary writers. I am grateful for the huge variety of poets I had a chance to know, to mentor, and to learn from.

I  also enjoyed the opportunity to collaborate with visual artists and paper-makers, and to co-curate Call & Response, an annual exhibit for which writing students were paired with art students to produce linked or collaborative work. Call & Response flourished in connection with a dozen years of my Book Beasts course, exploring erasure, visual texts, procedural texts, hand-made books, the artist’s book as memoir, and poetry at its intersections with visual arts, land art, and walking art. I also collaborated with a folklore  colleague to team-teach courses on the traditional ballads of Scotland, England, & the US.

Before my career at George Mason, I was a freelance writer, taught a few community workshops, and was a Colorado Arts Council Artist-in-Residence for a month in Yuma, Colorado, where (among several projects) I led a workshop for a battered women’s recovery group. Since the publication of Trafficke I have co-taught workshops on writing about race, privilege, and whiteness.

Here’s what I taught & directed at George Mason–

Graduate Courses
Form of Poetry / Poetry Workshop / Thesis Workshop / Poetic Sequence & Collage / War Poetry / Poetry from & as Research / Moore & Niedecker (& sometimes Loy) / Modernist Women Poets / Identity Poetics / Traditional Ballads (co-taught with Margaret Yocom) / Book Beasts (visual poetry, mesostics, book arts, constrained text, erasure…) / Directed Reading

Undergraduate Courses
Intro to Creative Writing / Poetry Writing / Advanced Poetry Workshop / Form of Poetry / American Poetry of 20th Century / Recent American Poetry / Women Writers / Book Beasts

Exhibition & Performance
Call & Response / Material Word / Poetry Theater

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