Class #88

Reading Poetry: The What, The Why, The How

John Angelos

November 7 - November 13, 2021

instructor imageWe feel pleasure at the heft of a clay pot, the intricate weave of a basket, the texture of a quilt—the glass, metal, wood and paint of an artist’s and craftsman’s hand. A deeper pleasure is obtained in understanding how these works were produced—how they evolved from clay, wood or fabric—through the imagination and creativity of those who make them. Certainly, literature too—in this case poetry—has its place in the total experience of process and product.

This class will examine both the finished poem and the artistry and craftsmanship that created it. You’ll read poems for content—for the WHAT—to discover the poet’s purpose and the reader’s response. You’ll read poems for the WHY. And you’ll read poems for close inspection of the structure, technique, and poetic devices—the HOW. Equally important, you will read the poems aloud. A silent reading may bring intellectual stimulation, but it lacks the total bodily immersion in the aural rhythm, pitch, stress, pauses and emphases of the speech. And besides, it’s fun!

The poet Eduardo Corral tells us, “I know a poem is done when I can identify three distinct pleasures: linguistic, emotional and intellectual.” If you are an old hand at poetry, or new to the experience, join this class and explore these three distinct pleasures.

The class will read poems by Whitman, Dickinson, Frost, Yeats, W.C. Williams, Cummings, Auden, Stevens, T.S. Eliot, Plath, G.M. Hopkins and others. John will provide all materials for $15 to $20. The class will meet every morning and on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.

John Angelos has a bachelor of science degree in English and drama from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and a master of science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He taught English for 28 years, the last 23 at Whitefish Bay High School in Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, where he taught poetry and modern literature. Since retiring from full-time teaching, he has taught classes about poetry, modern literature and drama in Milwaukee at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s School of Continuing Education, the Milwaukee Shakespeare Company and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. His special areas of interest are modernist writers, particularly James Joyce and the women writers of the period, and the American Civil War.

John will contact students prior to class.

Level: All levels
Materials Fee: $15 to $20 for a binder of all the poems to be read, payable to John during class.

Pricing (per person):
$1120 Dorm Room Package*
$1220 Two-Person Room Package*
$1835 Single-Person Room Package* (limited availability)
$625 Commuter Package** (limited availability)

*package includes tuition, lodging & 16 meals
**package includes tuition & 5 meals