We will be learning from your practice as writers throughout the semester by sharing your ideas, feelings, and thoughts about poems and poetry in public. During week one you will set up your domain using a WordPress (WP) installation. Here are the steps you will need to complete:

  • On Tuesday you will be Requesting an Account at KSCopenIf you already have a domain on KSCopen, you can with me about the next steps
  • You will then receive an e-mail with a link to create your subdomain on KSCopen
  • On Thursday, during class, I will guide you through a WP installation to create a project/portfolio site on your domain, or portfolio, as well as a subdirectory that will be your course blog.

The blog––what I hope will be the start of you taking control over your identity on the web––will be a portfolio, or a showcase of your engagement with poems and poetry this semester. As inspiration for making visible your engagement I have in mind the Favorite Poem Project that is dedicated to celebrating, documenting and encouraging poetry’s role in our lives.

As the course unfolds, I will be providing you with resources and class time for your blogs. We will also be talking about some of the issues with writing in the public domain, including audience and genre, privacy, agency and control, copyright and licensing. We will also play around in the open-source application you will be using in this course, WordPress.

As you build your course blog and include favorite poems, your commentaries, and other media or writing, I hope that you will also consider adding your own voice by including audio or video files. Robert Pinsky, the 39th Poet Laureate of the United States, founded the Favorite Poem Project shortly after the Library of Congress appointed him to the post in 1997. Here is what he says about the project:

By reading poems we love aloud, we can learn how much pleasure there can be in the sounds of words. It’s as though saying the words of a poem aloud make one feel more able, more capable than in ordinary life. You can concentrate on the physical sounds of the words to a point where they give you an emotional or an intellectual relief. You enter a different state. . . . When you say a poem aloud by William Shakespeare, Emily Dickinson or Langston Hughes, your voice is the artist’s medium.