Tag Archives: Toronto New School of Writing

How will you re-invent the sonnet?

One week left to enroll in my Sonnet Workshop at the Toronto New School of Writing. Click here to view course details on the TNSoW website.

And don’t worry, if you don’t want to write traditional sonnets, we’ll also

conceptualize
fantasize
destabilize
plagiarize
sexualize (un-bowdlerize)
Hooverize
Berriganize
zero-ize
parodize
phoneticize
blasonize (& anti-blasonize)
weave
cleave
deceive
pre-conceive
mis-conceive
beat
cheat
retreat (don’t tase me, Bard!)
boff
doff
scoff
dash off
fend off
bugger off
mace
erase
debase
disgrace
replace
deep space
upper case (or any case)

. . . and if you like, embrace

the sonnet (or what’s left of it)

Duration: 21 February – 27 March 2012 (6 Tuesdays) 6-8 PM
Location: Of Swallows, 283 College Street, Upper Floor Seminar Room

Click here for more information about the course and instructor bio at the TNSoW website.


Camille Martin

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The sexy “little song”: Sonnet Workshop by Camille Martin

How did the sonnet get from Petrarch to Bervin?



How will you re-invent the sonnet?

Find out in my six-week workshop/class on the sonnet at the Toronto New School of Writing. I taught this course last year and was blown away by the class discussions and the poetry written by the participants.

Click here to view the course on the TNSoW website. Register early to reserve your place!

Duration: 21 February – 27 March 2012 (6 Tuesdays) 6-8 PM
Location: Of Swallows, 283 College Street, Upper Floor Seminar Room

“The sonnet . . . is not a form at all but a state of mind.” – William Carlos Williams

Throughout its 800-year history, the sonnet has seen periods of vogue and dormancy, but it just keeps bouncing back, and its contemporary allure to poets shows no signs of abating. Just why did the sonnet come into being, and what accounts for its remarkable longevity?

In this Sonnet Workshop, we’ll explore the enduring appeal of the sexy “little song.” Combining a historical overview of the sonnet with creative writing assignments, this course offers you the opportunity to experience the sonnet as a traditional and experimental network of possibilities.

Through a series of Reading/Writing sessions focused around various poetic models, we’ll deepen our appreciation of the sonnet’s evolution as well as generate our own sonnets, continuing the historical momentum of this ever-popular “state of mind.”

Instructor bio:
Camille Martin is the author of Sonnets (2010), Codes of Public Sleep (2007), and Sesame Kiosk (2001). Of Sonnets, Rae Armantrout observes that “in some ways, these poems are almost traditional,” yet “in these taut, fast-paced, self-aware poems, the lyric meets 21st-century paranoia and sparks fly.” Carol Dorf writes that Martin creates “a world where science and myth intersect,” a “world of a mind reflecting on itself, the natural and built environments, time, and language.” And Jordan Scott speaks of “the magnificence in these poems, a poetic magnetic, propelling you to turn the page.”

Martin has performed her work in over twenty-five cities in the United States, Canada, Ireland, the United Kingdom, and France. She holds a Ph.D. in English from Louisiana State University and an M.F.A. in Poetry from the University of New Orleans. She is a seasoned instructor of poetry and workshops in the community and at high schools and universities.


Camille Martin

The return of the rogue . . .

More posts arriving soon, including samples from poetry books that have taken off the top of my head lately.

Meanwhile, please have a look at my newly spruced-up website—it’s leaner and cleaner and easier to navigate:

http://www.camillemartin.ca

Enjoy the perusing. Comments welcome!

In other news, I recently completed a new collection of poems, “Looms.” I used the Toronto New School of Writing‘s Manuscript Midwives program and went through intensive and gratifying editing sessions with poet Phil Hall, who has an uncanny ability to figure out what you want to do and help you do it better. I’m excited about this new manuscript, which is getting encouraging feedback from poet friends who’ve read the manuscript and heard my readings from it, most recently at AvantGarden.

And onward to a new poetry manuscript with the working title “Cambrian Blues.”

Cheers!

 


 

Camille Martin

Sonnet Workshop to begin Tuesday, March 15!

My “sonnet shakedown” workshop will run from March 15 to April 12.

Join us as we explore the kaleidoscopic history of the sonnet, from Petrarchan to Oulipian, from blazon to flarf and beyond. We’ll also write our own sonnets – using, throwing out, and writing our own rules of engagement with the “little song.” The sonnet is dead. Long live the sonnet!

Seating is limited, but there are still openings in the class—click here to sign up at the Toronto New School of Writing (TNSOW) website.

Here’s the info:

Sonnet Workshop (Mar 15 – Apr 12, 2011)
Instructor: Camille Martin


Duration: 5 weeks (Tuesdays), 15 March – 12 April 2011, 6:30 – 8:30pm

Capacity: 12 students

Combining a historical overview of the sonnet form (or as Hollo once called it, the sonnet state of mind) with creative writing assignments, this course offers students the opportunity to experience the sonnet as a traditional and experimental network of possibilities.

Through a series of Reading/Writing sessions focused around various “sonnet-inspired models,” participants will deepen their appreciation of the evolution of the sonnet across history as well as generate their own sonnets, investigating relationships between the rubrics of tradition and form and content and meaning, while continuing the momentum of the “little song’s” enduring popularity.

Required Texts: Sonnets by Camille Martin, as well as a selection of readings that will be provided.

Click here to register for the class at the TNSOW website.

 


 

Camille Martin

Sampling Jay Millar’s Other Poems


Gibsons, BC: Nightwood Editions, 2010
Order from Nightwood Editions

          I could wax on about Jay Millar’s contributions to the Toronto poetry community and beyond as publisher of BookThug, co-founder of the Toronto New School of Writing, and poetry instructor (at TNSOW and George Brown College). And he probably wears more hats than I’m aware of. In short, a tireless and generous opener of doors for poetry to happen.
          But Millar is also (and to my mind, first and foremost) a wonderful poet, one of the few whose work I keep returning to for inspiration. I’m most familiar with the last four books of this already prolific poet: ESP: Accumulation Sonnets, False Maps for Other Creatures, The Small Blue, and Other Poems. And it’s from his latest that I want to offer a sample.
          Though I’m not really doing full-fledged reviews in my “Sampling” series, I’d like to mention just a couple of things that I admire about Other Poems. First is the subtle but pervasive theme of impermanence and mortality, which owes much to his understanding of natural cycles of creation and erosion, emergence and decline. To break the eligiac spell, Millar occasionally offers bouts of pure playfulness, as in “TRANSLATIONS FROM THE THE” (below).
          Also, although Millar’s lyric voice often flows in a conversational diction, he’s also an artist of the beautifully sculpted sentence, as in

How to desire that crackle trees half
empty of leaves crackle?

And:

Or could you possibly hear how
long the walk to chorus-less songs the lingual tics
are as likely as any to empty into.

No mere exercises in parsing (though that’s a pleasure in its own right), the complex and quirky syntax of these sentences draws us closer, in the act of unraveling them, to the heart of the matter. “Crackle” as both a noun and a verb draws attention to itself as the sound of autumn’s decay (as does “half / empty”), which makes the juxtaposition of “desire” with such decline even more jarring. And there’s something tautological about “the crackle that trees crackle.” The circular structure emphasizes decay as a natural and inevitable process in the cycle of life.
          And in the second sentence, “how / long the walk” meshes with the long and rather twisted syntax of the sentence, both of which speak to the mysterious and largely unknowable journey between thought and utterance (and poem).
          One more reason to get the book: Rob Lemon’s fantastical bestiary of images on the cover and throughout the book.
          Here’s a sampling of poems:

WOOD PAGES

I
How to desire that crackle trees half
empty of leaves crackle? A mind that
will run their minimalist instincts
through an environment only to
build nests into the whole of the sky. So
ghostly I recall some talk about
their presence, like names for mammals,
truncated communication that
listens carefully to the dispersed.
To listen to the wind is to see
a love, the feeling of settling love.

II
Autumn: some landscape the edges of the sky pulled
toward the earth for leaves to kick up the wind.

Can you sense the moment leaves halt for a fleeting
distraction of silence? Walk listens aloud

for the sound. What all the nameless creatures name. Some
relationship between two species in which one

obtains nutrients from the bodily function
of the other. Or could you possibly hear how

long the walk to chorus-less songs the lingual tics
are as likely as any to empty into.
 
 
BOX MAINTENANCE

after Robin Blaser’s “The Medium”

I wandered around in the woods
all day thinking of the ‘you’

in so many poems camaraderie invented
hung from the trees, their threads

any community that existed only in minds
anything I might address a poem to, but don’t

what’s out there and never will be
a space between the trees filled with insects or air
images for the future to unravel
or imagine they may have caught
a glimpse of simply
by reading the scripts

What points to itself inwardly,
and whispers. We want to participate,
speak for the dead, care for them,
care about them, tell them ‘we believe’—

the characters deep mirrors of broken text
lead you expertly suspended

I wandered around all day.
Whose woods is this? What lives here?
Will anyone record their thoughts?
Who will maintain the boxes?

Surely no one could invent themselves
without somewhere to store the keys.

I’ve never been handed the invitation.
I’ve slept, it’s true, but never dreamed here—
What would be the point?

This place is not sacred
enough to speak to anyone
as long as I’m thinking of you.
 
   
from “ENTROPIC: A NARRATIVE”

2
Driving the machinery deep into the landscape
Had been slotted into a very particular slot because it—
The whiteness—hurts my eyes most days.
Perhaps it was selfish, or a little unsettling,
How this particular light cast our shadows
Considering the weight of darkness
Was certainly quiet, how you say
The trying to figure out all the angles
That morning we gathered near the beach to ask
How the sun could bother to raise again, the impression
So hard against those who arrived.
Meanwhile, we are gathered here in a fashion
All the others wrote for us, and they keep on writing—
If anything it is a wondrous distraction.
I can only say this because
When the time came to interpret the script we saw
Water continue to erode the rock.
 
 
TRANSLATIONS FROM THE THE

Some modern song a trophy
Mock sprocket undergarment triad

Forces jibe, people wander,
The hotsprings bike an awful

To the point. Meanwhile, there’s
A decent ruckus with the flab.

Pot lid. Stereophonic drywall.
The basement denies the haircuts.

Five or six melons? I’ve rooms
Enough for mechanical tarts,

No vague limp television morph—
Titanic invasion again. Death toll

Blue shirt and trouser roll. Heard
The new bowl? It’s deep. Round

Here chirp clunk and garble.
Give it effort. Give it a home.

 


 

Camille Martin

Sonnet Workshop at TNSOW!

Less than two weeks before my five-week Sonnet Workshop begins! Here’s the info:

Sonnet Workshop (Mar 15 – Apr 12, 2011)
Instructor: Camille Martin

Duration: 5 weeks (Tuesdays), 15 March – 12 April 2011, 6:30 – 8:30pm

Capacity: 12 students

Combining a historical overview of the sonnet form (or as Anselm Hollo once called it, the sonnet state of mind) with creative writing assignments, this course offers students the opportunity to experience the sonnet as a traditional and experimental network of possibilities.

Through a series of Reading/Writing sessions focused around various “sonnet-inspired models,” participants will deepen their appreciation of the evolution of the sonnet across history as well as generate their own sonnets, investigating relationships between the rubrics of tradition and form and content and meaning, while continuing the momentum of the “little song’s” enduring popularity.

Required Texts: Sonnets by Camille Martin, as well as a selection of readings that will be provided.

Click here to register for the class at the TNSOW website.

 


 

Camille Martin

New upcoming events – poetry and collage

Just uploaded some new information into my Upcoming Events page:


COLLAGE EXHIBIT

Sunday, December 12 – Thursday, December 23, 2010
Toronto: Arta Gallery at The Distillery / 55 Mill Street
Three limited-edition collage prints on exhibit and available for purchase, such as this one:

The Birth of Newton


POETRY WORKSHOP

Five Tuesdays: March 15 – April 12, 2011, 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Toronto New School of Writing
click here for details & registration


POETRY READING

Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Toronto: The Pivot at The Press Club / 850 Dundas Street West


COLLAGE EXHIBIT

June 2011
Toronto Public Library, Woodside Square Branch
Twelve limited-edition collage prints on exhibit and available for purchase