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Billy Collins

Poetry: How to Extract Love from Strangers

Billy Collins, photo by Suzannah Gilman
Billy Collins, photo by Suzannah Gilman
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This workshop is now full. You can still apply to be considered as an alternate.

workshop description

We will begin by assuming the indifference of the reader to our interior life and observations, then we will examine ways to change that situation by lifting the reader to a level of rapt attention. We will see the poem as a progress through itself, whether it follows its own instructions or veers off in unexpected directions, as it searches for a satisfying ending. We will talk about how to keep the poem flying along and how to tell when it has said enough and wants to close its beak and just sit there on the branch of the final line. And other matters. You will learn something and have fun. Or else.


Click here to apply via Submittable.

•    Admission to this workshop will be based upon an application including a writing sample of three or four poems. Those who have taken a workshop with Collins before, here or elsewhere, are not eligible to apply.

•    The cost of the workshop is $550. If you are accepted, a $100 deposit will be required to hold your place within a week of acceptance, with full payment due by December 1.

•    Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the class is full.

Financial Assistance is available to those who would not otherwise be able to attend—click here for guidelines and application.

about Billy Collins

Billy Collins is a two-term United States Poet Laureate, New York State Poet, and the author of ten collections of poetry, including his latest, The Rain in Portugal.

Called “the most popular poet in America” by the New York Times, Collins has led an unflagging career as a poet and public figure, and has introduced countless readers around the world to new poets and poetry. With the Library of Congress, he established Poetry 180, a teaching aid for high school students founded on the belief that “high school is often the place where poetry goes to die.”

Collins is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, has received fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, The National Endowment for the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation, and has won the Mark Twain Prize, the Bess Hokin Prize, the Frederick Bock Prize, the Oscar Blumenthal Prize, and the Levinson Prize—all awarded by Poetry magazine. In 1992 he was chosen by the New York Public Library to serve as a “Literary Lion.” His poems appear regularly in The Best American Poetry series, and he edited Bright Wings: An Anthology of Poems about Birds.

Collins is a Distinguished Fellow of the Winter Park Institute at Rollins College.