Established 2014
Director: Dr. Kim Bridgford
Non-profit since Dec. 2015


By the Sea
by Emily Dickinson

I started early, took my dog,
And visited the sea;
The mermaids in the basement
Came out to look at me,

And frigates in the upper floor
Extended hempen hands,
Presuming me to be a mouse
Aground, upon the sands.

But no man moved me till the tide
Went past my simple shoe,
And past my apron and my belt,
And past my bodice too,

And made as he would eat me up
As wholly as a dew
Upon a dandelion's sleeve—
And then I started too.

And he—he followed close behind;
I felt his silver heel
Upon my ankle,—then my shoes
Would overflow with pearl.

Until we met the solid town,
No man he seemed to know;
And bowing with a mighty look
At me, the sea withdrew.

Three-Day Workshops/Seminars—Run Wed, Thur, and Fri pm. Cost $840 (Includes panels & evening readings, lunch & dinner)

Dick Davis, Anna M. Evans, Joshua Mehigan, Steven P. Schneider, A.E. Stallings.

Two-Day Workshops/Seminars—Run Thur/Fri pm. Cost $250

Annie Finch, Natalie Gerber.

One-Day Workshops— Cost $125

Rafael Campo, (Thur pm); Richard Blanco, (Wed am); Allison Joseph, (Wed pm); Rowan Ricardo Phillips, (Thur am); Marilyn Taylor, (Fri am); Terri Witek with Cyriaco Lopes, (Tue pm)

Special One-Day Workshop, "Poetry & Food"— Cost $150

Tommy Habetz, (Sat am)

Panels & Evening Readings, Lunch & Dinner Only—Cost $510

Three-Day Workshops/Seminars

with Dick Davis

For over a thousand years rhyme has remained one of the most persistent ways of enhancing and organizing the diction of poetry, and although many poets now eschew rhyme it is still seen as a virtually essential constituent of certain kinds of verse (for example, the lyrics of songs, virtually all of which employ rhyme, as do the verse of comic or satirical poetry; and when asked to choose their favorite poems of any kind most people still choose example of rhyming poetry).

In this course we shall examine the various uses and effects of rhyme. We shall look at full rhyme and slant rhyme (as well as slant rhyme's interesting origins), simple and complex rhyme schemes, clever rhymes and banal rhymes, masculine rhymes and feminine rhymes, monorhyme and internal rhyme, rhyme royal and hidden rhyme, avoided rhymes and echo rhymes, and the various effects all these can produce in the hands of a poet conscious of rhyme's seemingly almost endless rhetorical possibilities.

Dick Davis is Professor Emeritus of Persian at Ohio State University, where he was chair of the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures from 2002 to 2012. He has written scholarly works on both English and Persian literature, as well as eight volumes of his own poetry. He has been the recipient of numerous academic and literary awards, including both the Ingram Merrill and Heinemann awards for poetry; his publications include volumes of poetry and verse translation chosen as books of the year by The Sunday Times (UK) 1989; The Daily Telegraph (UK) 1989; The Economist (UK) 2002; The Washington Post 2010, and The Times Literary Supplement (UK) 2013. He has published numerous book-length verse translations from medieval Persian, most recently, Faces of Love: Hafez and the Poets of Shiraz (2012). He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and has been called, by the Times Literary Supplement, "our finest translator from Persian."

The Mezzo Cammin Women Poets Timeline Seminar with Anna M. Evans

Participants in this women-only seminar commit to the preparation of a rigorous 3000+ word scholarly essay on a woman poet for the Mezzo Cammin Women Poets Timeline Project, an online database currently containing 50+ such essays founded by Dr. Kim Bridgford.

Essays should be about one third biography and two thirds critical analysis, written using MLA format, and include 3-4 poems. Each essay should aim to provide a critical introduction to the poet written at a level suitable for undergraduate readers.

Anna M. Evans' poems have appeared in the Harvard Review, Atlanta Review, Rattle, American Arts Quarterly, and 32 Poems. She gained her MFA from Bennington College, and is the Editor of the Raintown Review. Recipient of Fellowships from the MacDowell Artists' Colony and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and winner of the 2012 Rattle Poetry Prize Readers' Choice Award, she currently teaches at West Windsor Art Center and Richard Stockton College of NJ. Her new sonnet collection, Sisters & Courtesans, is available from White Violet Press. Visit her online at

Blank Verse
with Joshua Mehigan

Since its invention by Surrey in 1540, blank verse has proven to be one of the most dynamic and versatile forms in English. Without it, no Paradise Lost, King Lear, Prelude, or Aurora Leigh. No "Ulysses," "Directive," or "Sunday Morning." Blank verse can yield a megalith like Paradise Lost, the "divine chit-chat" of Cowper, or the crackerbarrel vernacular of Frost. Or it can be, as it was for Shakespeare, what the Bonneville salt flats are for race car drivers: a place to open things up and test all your powers of innovation and execution. In this workshop, we'll look at various expressive textures of blank verse (pyrotechnic, monumental, meditative, conversational) and consider some of the local effects of timing and emphasis that are available to writers working in the form. We'll also read a diverse selection of examples from the 17th century to the 21st, in addition to poetry by workshop participants.

Joshua Mehigan's first book, The Optimist, was a finalist for the 2004 Los Angeles Times Book Prize. His poems have appeared in many periodicals, including The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The Village Voice, and Poetry, which awarded him its 2013 Levinson Prize. Mehigan's second book is Accepting the Disaster (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), named in the TLS and The New York Times Book Review as a best book of 2014. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Poetry & Art: Giving Voice to Vision
with Steven P. Schneider

This seminar taught by Steven P. Schneider will explore the intersection of voice and vision, poetry and art. Theory and practice will be linked in this three day seminar. Participants will read and discuss seminal articles on both the history and contemporary practice of Ekphrasis. Each participant will present a previously published Ekphrastic poem to the seminar and discuss its strategies. In addition, the praxis in this seminar will include writing exercises as well as discussion of a poem of your own about a drawing, painting, statue, photograph or other work of art.

How does a work of art inspire the creative imagination? In what forms do poets respond to, interpret or even speak for a work of art? What is the long history of Ekphrasis and why has it become a major genre in modern and contemporary poetry? How should a poem be presented with the artwork it responds to? This seminar will address these and other theoretic and practical questions. If you have an interest in the conjunction of voice and vision, this is the seminar for you!

You will receive a bibliography on Ekphrasis, along with a list of journals that publish both scholarly essays and Ekphrastic poems. You will also receive "Ten Prompts for Jumpstarting Your Ekphrastic Relationship" and suggestions on how to curate Poetry-Art collaborations. Each day we will take a short walk by the sea to "exercise" our vision.

Steven P. Schneider is professor of English and director of new programs and special projects in the College of Arts and Humanities at the University of Texas-Pan American. He is co-creator with his artist wife Reefka of the traveling exhibit and book Borderlines: Drawing Border Lives (Fronteras: dibujando las vidas fronterizas), a collection of poems and drawings about the U.S. / Mexico border. Steven, a graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop, is the author of several collections of poetry, including Prairie Air Show and Unexpected Guests. Steven's poetry has been featured in American Life in Poetry, Prairie Schooner, The Literary Review, Critical Quarterly, and numerous other international journals. Steven is also the author and editor of several important critical books on Contemporary American Poetry, including The Contemporary Narrative Poem (2012) published by The University of Iowa Press.

Entrances & Exits
with A.E. Stallings

In which we will explore how to get into a poem, and how to get out of it again.

A. E. Stallings is an American poet who has lived in Greece since 1999. She has published three collections, most recently Olives, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. She has received fellowships from the Guggenheim, United States Artists, and MacArthur foundations, and a translation grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Her verse translation of Lucretius, The Nature of Things, is being rereleased by Penguin Classics in a new hardback edition, and her version of Hesiod's The Works and Days is forthcoming with them.

Two-Day Workshops/Seminars

Inventing Form
with Annie Finch

Poetic form is a powerful tool—but only to the extent that it serves the poem. This workshop will focus on the cultivation of form that arises organically from within the poem itself. We will begin with a broad taxonomy of poetic forms, discussing examples from classic and contemporary poets. Then we will move to workshopping your own poems, whether in free verse form or free verse, using the technique of the Poetic Code to analyze and cultivate their hidden formal dimensions. Poets will leave this workshop with a new perspective on how form works in poetry and a set of formal tools applicable to any act of poetic creation or revision.

Annie Finch has published eighteen books, most recently Spells: New and Selected Poems (2013). Her books about poetry include A Formal Feeling Comes, The Body of Poetry, An Exaltation of Forms, Villanelles, Measure for Measure: An Anthology of Poetic Meters, and A Poet's Craft: A Comprehensive Guide to Making and Sharing Your Poetry. Her work on prosody has been honored with the Robert Fitzgerald Award and her books of poetry have been shortlisted for the National Poetry Series, Yale Series of Younger Poets, and many other awards. Her epic poem about abortion, Among the Goddesses, was awarded the 2010 Sarasvati Award for poetry from the Association for the Study of Women and Mythology. Annie is the founder of Poetry Witch Magazine and the Poetry Witches Community.

Intonation, Meter, and Free Verse
with Natalie Gerber

Poets who write from the ear and the voice know that intonation enriches their verse, but few know how. In this seminar, we will examine what 20th- and 21st-century poets said about intonation as well as how intonation actually works, especially in relation to the verse line. Topics covered will include how poets have used and can use the correlates of intonation to score their poems, whether metrical or free, and what about intonation can and can't be put on the page. Poets will have the opportunity to put intonation into play in their poems; scholars, to consider the role of intonation in verse. Participants will be given an extensive portfolio of poems, essays, and news stories to read; we'll focus on a subsection of these, determined in part by participants' interests, for the seminar.

For further information or to indicate your interest in joining the seminar, please email Natalie Gerber at

Natalie Gerber has written and thought extensively about the role of intonation in poetry and poetics. She is the author of "Intonation and the Conventions of Free Verse" (Style, 2015); the co-editor, with David Nowell-Smith, of Intonation, a forthcoming special issue of Thinking Verse (Dec. 2015); and the co-organizer, with noted composition theorist Peter Elbow, of the weeklong symposium, "Rhythm and Intonation on the Page" (UMass Amherst, 2014). She and Tom Cable presented an overview of intonation at last year's Poetry by the Sea. This creative/critical seminar is an opportunity to explore that and additional material in more depth, as well as consider the rather curious flurry of attention to intonation in the news (e.g., "NPR Voice Has Taken Over the Airwaves"; NYT, Oct. 2015) to social media ("Why are poets' voices so insufferably annoying?; Mashable, Feb. 2015).

One-Day Workshops

Poetry & Healing
with Rafael Campo

The earliest of civilizations, from many Native American cultures to that of the ancient Greeks, recognized an inextricable interrelationship between poetry and healing; surely, the best poems we have today demand that we listen, and not just with our ears, but with our whole hearts. In this workshop, we'll examine the ways in which poems join us empathetically, through their sound and structure as much as through their insistent invitations to share our diverse human experiences. We'll ponder how poems can make effective use of the richly complex tensions between such linked notions as authorship/authority, confession/ confinement, hyperbole/humility, and identity/immunity. To best achieve our goals, we'll devote some time to reading together works by Thom Gunn, Marilyn Hacker, Maxine Kumin, Frank O'Hara, Anne Sexton, and William Carlos Williams.

Goals: 1) To explore and understand the link between creative self-expression and healing; 2) To define a "biocultural" narrative of the illness experience, in contrast to the restrictive biomedical narrative encountered in most health care settings; 3) To investigate the historical connections between language, art, and therapeusis; 4) To develop strategies for integrating humanistic work in the delivery of health care.

Rafael Campo, M.A., M.D., D. Litt., is a poet and essayist who teaches and practices internal medicine at Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. He is also on the faculty of Lesley University's Creative Writing MFA Program. He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including a Guggenheim fellowship, a National Poetry Series award, and a Lambda Literary Award for his poetry; his third collection of poetry, Diva (Duke University Press, 2000), was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and The Enemy (DUP, 2007), won the Sheila Motton Book Award from the New England Poetry Club. His work has appeared in many periodicals including The Nation, The New Republic, the New York Times Magazine, Paris Review, Poetry,,, and the Washington Post Book World.

Diving Deeper
with Richard Blanco

Through an interactive lecture and reading of various illustrative poems we will dive deeper into some of the key elements of poetry, namely: sensory details (a new golden rule: "Show and Tell"), the modulations of the line (line breaks, line length, line typography), and linguistic musicality. Though we may have been using these craft tools automatically or instinctually, our goal will be to gain a stronger, more purposeful command of them through readings, discussions, writing exercises, and sharing of participants' poems.

Richard Blanco is the fifth inaugural poet in US history—the youngest, first Latino, immigrant, and gay person to serve in such a role. Born in Madrid to Cuban-exiled parents and raised in Miami, the negotiation of cultural identity and place characterize his body of work. He is the author of three poetry collections: Looking for the Gulf Motel, Directions to the Beach of the Dead, and City of a Hundred Fires; and two memoirs: The Prince of Los Cocuyos: A Miami Childhood and For All of Us, One Today: An Inaugural Poet's Journey. Blanco's many awards include the Agnes Starrett Poetry Prize from the University of Pittsburgh Press, the Beyond Margins Award from the PEN American Center, the Paterson Poetry Prize, the Thom Gunn Award, a Lambda Literary Award, and two Maine Literary Awards.

Creative Writing Pedagogy
with Allison Joseph

This workshop will focus on creative writing pedagogy--specifically the pedagogy of teaching several different forms of poetry to undergraduate writers. We will focus on the sonnet, the elegy, the ode, and the villanelle as forms particularly suited for the undergraduate poetry classroom. Student examples and classroom-proven exercises will be provided.

Allison Joseph lives, writes, and teaches in Carbondale, Illinois, where she is part of the creative writing faculty at Southern Illinois University. She serves as editor and poetry editor of Crab Orchard Review, moderator of the Creative Writers Opportunities List, and director of the Young Writers Workshop, a summer writers workshop for teen writers.

Her books and chapbooks include What Keeps Us Here (Ampersand Press), Soul Train (Carnegie Mellon University Press), In Every Seam (University of Pittsburgh), Wordly Pleasures (Word Tech), Imitation of Life (Carnegie Mellon UP), Voice: Poems (Mayapple Press), My Father's Kites (Steel Toe Books), Trace Particles (Backbone Press), Little Epiphanies (Imaginary Friend Press), Multitudes (forthcoming, Word Tech Communications)​, and The Purpose of Hands (forthcoming, Glass Lyre Press).

The Ode
with Rowan Ricardo Phillips

The once luminous presence of the ode in the English language has dimmed. For reasons just and unjust this happens: no form is guaranteed life everlasting. But the ode has not left us, not should it. And, as this workshop will demonstrate, the vitality of the ode as a form, method and texture still reverberate strongly both in how and why we write poems. Instead of regular and irregular, Horatian and Pindaric odes, there are now explicit and implicit odes; odes that announce themselves as such and poems that pass under the radar as mere lyric poems but that carry the spirit of the ode. Understanding how the principles of the ode and a willingness to embrace them enhance your poetry is a step to also understanding how contemporary poetry remains deeply engaged with what has every right to be considered the form of forms. If you write odes or find yourself simply interested in the ode, then this is the workshop for you.

Rowan Ricardo Phillips is the author of Heaven (FSG, 2015) and The Ground (FSG, 2012). He is the winner of a Whiting Writers' Award, the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award, the GLCA New Writers Award for Poetry, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He lives in New York City.

The Making of a Villanelle
with Marilyn Taylor

Have you ever stopped to think that the real key to writing a memorable villanelle lies in mastering the fine art of repeating yourself? Participants in this one-day workshop will find themselves doing precisely that—first, by zeroing in on a fresh premise that lends itself beautifully to repetition; and second, by putting to good use the intrinsic quirks and complexities of the form itself, which can provide the poet with a number of unexpected twists and possibilities. Certain crafty shortcuts make the whole challenge far easier than it might seem, so why not give it a shot? It's going to be intensive, it's going to be fun, and you may find yourself going boldly where your formal poetry has never gone before.

Marilyn L. Taylor, former Poet Laureate of the state of Wisconsin (2009 and 2010) and the city of Milwaukee (2004 and 2005), is the author of six poetry collections. Her award-winning poems and essays have appeared in many anthologies and journals, including Poetry, American Scholar, Measure, Able Muse, Poemeleon, Light, Ted Kooser's "American Life in Poetry" column, and in the Random House anthology titled Villanelles. She has also been awarded First Place in contests sponsored by The Atlanta Review, Passager, The Ledge, Dogwood, and the GSU Review. Marilyn taught poetry and poetics for fifteen years at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and served for five years as a Contributing Editor for THE WRITER magazine, where her widely-read "Poet to Poet" column on the craft of poetry appeared bimonthly. She currently facilitates independent poetry workshops and presentations in communities throughout Wisconsin and elsewhere, and through the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Division of Continuing Studies and Lawrence University's Bjorklunden Seminar Center in Baileys Harbor, Wisconsin.

Poetry by the Sea
with Terri Witek & Cyriaco Lopes

Led by a poet and a visual artist, this collaborative workshop invites poets to re-think their histories wih bodies of water by making new work. Site-specific prompts.

Poet Terri Witek and visual artist Cyriaco Lopes have been collaborating since 2005. While Witek often writes poetry about art, Lopes' art work often investigates language. A signature of their collaborations is that their media interweave while each retains its identity. By reinventing, interrupting and restaging each other's words and images, they create a hybrid third possibility. Their collaborations so far have extended to video, performance, photography, drawing, and artists' books.

In the past few years Lopes' work has been seen in the U.S. at the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore, at El Museo del Barrio, ApexArt and the America's Society in New York, at the Contemporary Art Museum in Saint Louis, among other venues. In the same period his work was also seen in Turkey, Armenia, Italy, France, Germany, Poland, Chile and Portugal. In his native Brazil the artist has shown at the National Museum of Fine Arts, the Museum of Modern Art of Salvador, and the Museum of Art of São Paulo, among other institutions. His work was curated into exhibitions by artists such as Janine Antoni, Luciano Fabro and Lygia Pape, as well as by curators such as Paulo Herkenhoff. Lopes was the winner of the Worldstudio AIGA and RTKL awards, the Contemporary Art Museum Project award (Saint Louis) and the Prêmio Phillips of a trip to Paris. A recent project, Crimes Against Love, was featured on the cover of The Advocate.Visit him online at

Terri Witek is the author of Exit Island, The Shipwreck Dress ( Florida Book Award Medalists), Carnal World, Fools and Crows, Courting Couples (Winner of the 2000 Center for Book Arts Contest) and Robert Lowell and LIFE STUDIES: Revising the Self, as well two recent chapbooks: First Shot at Fort Sumter/Possum and On Gavdos Ferry. A new book of poems, Body Switch, is forthcoming. A native of northern Ohio, she teaches English at Stetson University, where she holds the Sullivan Chair in Creative Writing.Visit her online at

Poetry and Food
with Tommy Habetz

Chef Tommy Habetz will conduct a cooking demonstration in the gourmet kitchen of Seascape. Afterwards, participants will have an opportunity to write a poem inspired by food. For participants who love poetry and food, this is a must!

Growing up in Fairfield, Conn., Tommy Habetz worked at local delis, bakeries and coffee shops before attending The Natural Gourmet Cookery School in New York City and subsequently securing two externships: Po with Mario Batali, and Mesa Grill with Bobby Flay. His relationship with Mario continued when he helped open Lupa in 1999 to rave reviews. It was then he had the fortunate opportunity to travel to Rome and cook with Paola di Mauro, the grandmother of Roman cooking. In 2000, he traveled south to Boca Raton, Fla., and opened Lucca for Drew Nieporent's Myriad Restaurant Group. He made the move back to Portland in 2002 and spent the next six years working in various restaurants. First up was Lucere and Genoa in 2002, and then Tommy served as Executive Chef at Ripe Family Supper in 2003. At Gotham Building Tavern from 2005 to 2006, he initially served as co-chef with Naomi Pomeroy and then became a partner and the Executive Chef. Tommy Habetz has cemented his place in Portland with Bunk Sandwiches—a no-nonsense gourmet sandwich shop he opened in November 2008 with friend Nick Wood.