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October 24 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Create an image that’s alive and full of possibility


Ilya Kaminsky says poetry is not just about an event; it is an event. This points me toward the idea that a successful poem is made of movement, of tension and release, of struggle and yearning. Often though, when I first draft an image, it’s static: an apple tree behind a red Adirondack chair, for example. It isn’t until I explore further that I begin rolling. Usually, I ask myself what that image is doing there, in my mind. I might say, Why does it matter? Why do I remember it? Who cares about this apple tree or this chair besides me? Asking these questions, and answering with specificity helps not only create a fuller, more alive image, but sheds light on what I might really be trying to get at: that my father planted the apple tree before I was born. How every year, when my father picks them, I can only imagine him on the ladder, pulling one at a time because it’s been years since I moved away. That the plastic Adirondack chair he used to nap in, is now cracked—the red dried out to deep pink. And that instead of throwing it away, my father uses the chair to dry hand towels.

In this generative workshop, we’ll talk about ways to create an image that’s alive and full of possibility for a poem. I’ll provide prompts and poems (as examples) for the class as we will spend much of the time writing. We’ll share some of our work, and return to what we wrote, moving further into those images.


This 2-hour workshop is presented online via Zoom and is limited to 15 participants. Tuition for the workshop is $40. Write On members receive a 10% discount. To become a member, please click here. To register online for this workshop, please click the button below. For other registration options, please call 920.868.1457.

Michael Torres was born and brought up in Pomona, California where he spent his adolescence as a graffiti artist. His debut collection of poems, An Incomplete List of Names (Beacon Press, 2020) was selected by Raquel Salas Rivera for the National Poetry Series. His honors include awards and support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the McKnight Foundation, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, CantoMundo, VONA Voices, the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Jerome Foundation, the Camargo Foundation, and the Loft Literary Center. Currently he’s an Assistant Professor in the MFA program at Minnesota State University, Mankato, and a teaching artist with the Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop. Visit him at: michaeltorreswriter.com


October 24
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
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