Writing Poetry for Everyday Life
"Poetry is just the evidence of life," says Leonard Cohen. "If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash."
You don't need an advanced degree to reap the rewards of a rich poetic lifewriting poetry is within the reach of everyone. Poet Sage Cohen invites you to slow down to the rhythms of your creative process and savor poetry by:
- Offering explorations of the poetic life and craft
- Inspiring a feeling of play instead of laborious study
- Weaving together lessons in content, form, and process to provide a fun and engaging experience
- Inviting you to add poetry to your creative repertoire
Writing the Life Poetic is the inspirational companion you've been looking for to help you build confidence in your poetic voice. It takes poetry from its academic pedestal and puts it back into the hands of the people.
Join the conversation with other poets at: www.writingthelifepoetic.typepad.com.
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
Sage Cohen is the author of the poetry collection Like the Heart, the World. Her poems and essays have appeared in dozens of publications, including The Sunday Oregonian, Poetry Flash, Oregon Literary Review, VoiceCatcher, and Greater Good. In 2008 she was nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and in 2006 she won first prize in the Ghost Road Press poetry contest. Sage teaches poetry e-courses and writes a monthly column about the life poetic for Writers on the Rise, where she also serves as managing editor. A speaker at writing conferences, festivals, bookstores and libraries, she hosts the Barnes & Noble Reading Series in Portland, Oregon. To learn more about Sage, visit www.writingthelifepoetic.com.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I sat down with Sage Cohen¿s Writing the Life Poetic, expecting to be inspired to read and write more poetry. Not expecting: * Tips for fighting off writer¿s block, that I¿ll use in both my fiction and nonfiction writing * Inspiration for making my prose flow better * Motivation to prioritize my writing time * Ideas for cultivating a writing ritual that I¿ve never seen in another writing craft book * To read an entire chapter aloud to my husband * To get a little choked up in the processWhile Cohen¿s aim is to guide readers through different aspects of reading and writing poetry, nearly everything she says can be applied to any type of writing, or, for that matter, any creative endeavor. Just as one doesn¿t have to be a gardener in order to enjoy a tour through a friend¿s treasured garden, there¿s an abundance of beauty here for poet and non-poet alike.Cohen sprinkles her eighty short chapters with snippets of poetry and full poems, both simply for the art of them and in exercises to get the creative juices flowing which are sure to inspire teachers of both adults and children. Readable enough to zip straight through all the way through, and full of gems worthy of going back to again and again.
Sage Cohen extends a gracious invitation to join her in Writing The Life Poetic. She welcomes us to that metaphorical clearing in the woods, or to accompany her on a walk upon a shell-filled shore, buoyed along by her gentle nudging. Through Cohen's well-placed poetic examples and her personal yet all inclusive tone, she nurtures a "poetic state of mind." She urges us to find poetry along the way; dares us to reshape our lives in order to do so. Cohen prompts us to snatch snippets of poetry along life's paths and to pick it like fruit hanging bountiful, as on pear-laden trees. She challenges her readers to "infuse the muse." All the while, Cohen extracts poetry from those unreachable dimensions and offers it up to us at eye level, where each of us can see, taste, hear, touch and inhale the poetic life. In the end, she calls us to be the vessel for the word as we strike out on our own poem-filled journeys. Kim Klugh
The first thing I noticed about Writing the Life Poetic when I opened up my package was the beautiful cover. Already, before even opening the book up to the first page, my senses were heightened by the brilliant designs and colors. When I ran my fingers over the cover of the book I was pleasantly surprised by the raised designs (especially on the back cover) and the raised text. Just holding the book was a poetic experience. Then I opened it - Wow! I was struck by the contrast between the bright white paper, the text, the colors, and the illustrations. Without reading a word my creative mind had already been given a jumpstart. I was a closet poet for nearly twenty years and when I finally had the courage to submit some poetry for critique I realized how much I did not know about poetry. I was discouraged and even considered not writing poetry anymore because it all seemed too complicated and then I saw an advertisement in Writer's Digest for this book. I thought I would give it a try and I am so glad that I did. My reading of Writing the Life Poetic coincided with a 30-day poetry writing regimen that I participated in and I had the chance to incorporate much of Sage Cohen's advice with great results. Her instructions are clear and concise and so easy to understand even for a beginner like me. The chapters are short but provide a wealth of information and encouragement. I read one chapter per day and this easily fit into my hectic schedule. Eighty days later I was not only writing more poetically, I was living more poetically. What Cohen has taught me through these beautiful pages has helped me in all of my writing: poetry, personal essays, and memoir. She has taught me that there is poetry to be found in even the most minute and mundane of things; in the things that might be overlooked even discarded otherwise. She has taught me that it is the awareness of the world around me and the writing of that awareness that is so important even if at first glance I do not consider what I write to be "top quality". I recommend this book to beginner and experienced poets and writers alike. Beginners will get a guide book on how to embrace the poetry within and around them. Those with experience will get a fresh perspective on reading and writing poetry and expand their creative minds to higher levels. I also recommend Cohen's book of poetry, Like the Heart, the World, which will, after reading, unequivocally convince you that she knows of what she writes. Sage Cohen also has a Writing the Life Poetic blog that you can subscribe to and it is a must read for all the fans of her book. It will provide you with a continuation of the same fresh poetic view of life that is seen within the pages of this book.
The smell of ink is intoxicating to me - others may have wine, but I have poetry. ~Abbe Yeux-verdi I just received my copy of Writing the Life Poetic, An Invitation to Read & Write Poetry yesterday. It is a beautiful book written by poet Sage Cohen and illustrated by Gregoire Vion. I think the subtitle really captures what the book is about. Sage is inviting all writers to experience poetry and play with words and language. In 258 pages and 80 short chapters Sage encompasses craft, form, voice, revision, shape, motivation, getting your work out, poetry contests, mixed media, blogging as a poet, poetry and writing groups, readings, and much more.The book includes many poetic and creative writing prompts/lessons, examples of poetry from familiar to new-to-me poets and stories of Sage's journey as a poet. But most of all it contains inspiration. Each chapter seamlessly leads to the next. With a warm, inviting conversational tone this writing reference book is one I will pick up again and again when I'm feeling the "why do I want to write poetry feeling?" On the back cover of the book Sage invites all readers to "join the conversation" at her book blog. I want to gift this book to all of my creative writing friends whether they consider themselves poets or not.
This manual on how to write poetry tries to do it all - and succeeds very, very often. While its 80 chapters concentrate on many a useful item - some of the popular forms poems come in, how to thrive within a writing community, different ways to spice up your creativity, different outlets for your work - the main theme is allowing one's writing voice to find its true colors. To do that, Cohen encourages the slowing down of life a bit so more details can be drawn in and deeper issues come to the surface. Cohen writes in a beautiful, uplifting style, yet is casual and often humorous.
A second major theme is that all writing can help one get better - the quickest jotting down in a journal, the crappiest rough draft of a poem - every poem one writes now is of a higher, truer quality because of all the poems that came before it. I would say that a lot of these lessons could be used for the fiction and especially memoir writer.
Spiced up with personal anecdotes and full of excellent example poems, this book will get both the beginner and seasoned poet going.