Monday, June 29, 2015



A Poetry Workshop With Leonard Gontarek

A Free 4-Week Workshop

July 1, 8, 15, 29, 2015.   All Wednesdays, 6-7:30 PM

Walnut Street West Library – 40th & Walnut Streets (SE Corner) Philadelphia 19104


This workshop is presented free through the generosity of Mad Poets Society.
It is open to everyone.

*Students will gain a fuller understanding of poetry in our world and improve
their poetic skills.
*International and American Poetry will be discussed, with a focus
on what makes a poet’s voice original, what makes the voice their own,
and the ways in which the poet speaks directly to the reader.
Students will learn to identify, and trust, the same qualities in their poems,
and establish voice as a working principle in their poetry.
*The workshop is designed to identify and develop the sense of place
in the poet’s work. The aim is to firmly root the poem where it takes place,
so the subject matter and concerns of the poem will unfold around it.
*Specific direction and assignments will be given, with attention
to the basic elements and forms of poetry. Through invention,
students will build more accurate and textured work.
*The workshop is structured to accommodate poets at any level of accomplishment.

Leonard Gontarek is the author of five books of poems:
St. Genevieve Watching Over Paris, Van Morrison Can’t Find His Feet,
Zen For Beginners, Déjà Vu Diner, He Looked Beyond My Faults and
Saw My Needs (Hanging Loose Press, 2013). His poems have appeared
in American Poetry Review, Field, Poet Lore, Verse, Exquisite Corpse,
Handsome, Fence, Blackbird, The Awl, Poetry Northwest, Spinning Jenny,
and in the anthologies, The Best American Poetry, The Working Poet,
Poems for the Writing: Prompts for Poets, and Joyful Noise: American
Spiritual Poetry. He twice received poetry fellowships from the
Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and was the 2011 Philadelphia
Literary Death Match Champion. Since 2006, he has conducted 1000
poetry workshops in venues including, The Moonstone Arts Center,
Musehouse, The Kelly Writers House, University City Arts League,
the Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership, and a weekly
Saturday workshop from his home in West Philadelphia.
He hosts the Green Line Café Reading and Interview Series.

While there’s no guarantee you’ll become the next Robert Frost, with the guidance of award-winning, prolific poet Leonard Gontarek, it’s at least a possibility. Encouraging students to explore as many avenues as possible and remove themselves from their work, he’ll help you find—then strengthen—your style and voice.

                                                Philadelphia Weekly

He’s a poet’s poet.                             The Philadelphia Inquirer

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