Each year, Poets & Patrons hosts our workshops, led by established poets, editors, and teachers from Illinois and surrounding states
The workshops are designed to increase skill in writing both traditional and non-traditional poetry. Unless otherwise noted, the workshops will be in room 6-N on the third floor of the Harold Washington Library, 400 S. State Street, Chicago, Illinois. Workshop participants are invited to join us for an optional lunch at the Panera at 501 State Street before each workshop in order to enjoy each others' company and talk about poetry generally.
Members of Poets & Patrons who have published books are invited to display them for sale at any of our workshops and/or at the reading of the winning poems from the Chicagoland Poetry Contest. Members can also list their books on our website.
Please scroll to the bottom of this page to see a list of past workshops.
Poets and Patrons will be at Poetry Fest at the Harold Washington Library on April 28! Please join us for a workshop led by Wilda Morris!!
On Saturday, April 28, the Harold Washington Library (400 S. State St., Chicago) will be hosting a Poetry Fest the entire day, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Our workshop chair, Wilda Morris, will be leading a special workshop on Verbs from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. The workshop is free, and so is the entire day of other poetry events that day. Come join the fun!
Verbalize It: How the Best Action Word Can Enliven Your Poem led by Wilda Morris
Any kind of verb, even a passive one, may be what your poem needs. The question is how to decide when it strengthens your poem and when it weakens it. If you need or want an active verb, how do you decide which verb to use? What are some creative ways to strengthen your writing by letting verbs do work that is sometimes passed off to adverbs? Activities and sample poems will help participants improve their writing of both poetry and prose.
Wilda Morris is Workshop Chair of Poets & Patrons, and Past-President of the Illinois State Poetry Society. Almost 500 of her poems can be found in on-line and print publications. Her book,Szechwan Shrimp and Fortune Cookies: Poems from a Chinese Restaurant, was published in 2008. Her blog, at wildamorris.blogspot.com, provides a monthly contest for other poets.
Past Workshops and Readings
February 24, 2018
Weaving Magic into Poetry
Led by Rockford poet Christine Swanberg, author of THE RED LACQUER ROOM, WHO WALKS AMONG THE TREES WITH CHARITY, THE ALLELUIA TREE, and most re-cently WILD FRUITION: SON-NETS, SPELLS, AND OTHER INCANTATIONS.
October 14, 2017
Golden Shovel Workshop
Led by Linda Wallin, president of Poets and Patrons and retired Special Education teacher.
August 26, 2017
Sonnets Are Fun!
Led by Mary Hanford, retired English professor and author of Holding to the Light (poetry), Dr. Sally’s Voodoo Man (novel), and Swimming at Villa Hugel (memoir).
June 18, 2017
Let Art Inspire Your Poetry: How to Be Ekphrastic
Led by Beth McDermott, Assistant Professor of English, St. Francis University, Joliet, and Associate Editor of RHINO
April 29, 2017
Led by Caroline Johnson, Vice President and former President, Poets & Patrons of Chicago, and author of two chapbooks
February 25, 2017
What the Heck is a Prose Poem?
Led by Kathleen Rooney, Co-founder of Rose Metal Press and Senior Professional Lecturer,
October 29, 2016
Music as Muse
Led by Wilda Morris, Former President, Illinois State Poetry Society, and Workshop Chair, Poets & Patrons of Chicago
August 27, 2016
Using Fairy Tale, Myth and Legend in Your Poetry
Led by Jennifer Dotson, Program Coordinator, Highland Park Poetry, and winner of Journal of Modern Poetry Book Award
June 25, 2016
The Shape a Poem Makes
Led by Christine Swanberg, author of three books of poetry, workshop leader at The Clearing,
Door County, WI
April 23, 2016
What We Can Learn About Writing Poetry from Shakespeare
Led by William Yarrow, Professor of English, Joliet Junior College
February 27, 2016
In Praise of Praise Poems
Led by Tom Roby IV, President, Poets Club of Chicago and creator of The Poetry Wheel, and Jenene Ravesloot, author of three books of poetry
October 17, 2015
Surrealist Game Poetry
Led by Pamela Larson, poet, artist and photographer
August 22, 2015
Led by Debra Bruce, Professor Emeritus, Northeastern Illinois University, and Andrea Witzke Slot, prize-winning novelist, poet and essayist
June 27, 2015
Writing the Spiritual Poem
Led by Judith Valente, winner of the Aldrich Poetry Prize and a Catholic Book Award, and correspondent for PBS
April 25, 2015
Love Poetry with an Attitude
Led by Marilyn Taylor, former Poet Laureate of Wisconsin
February 28, 2015
Led by Albert DeGenova, publisher and editor of After Hours
October 25, 2014
The Fun Art of Haiku & Senryu
Led by Charlotte Digregorio, Midwest Coordinator, Haiku Society of America and author of Haiku and Senryu: a Simple Guide for All
August 23, 2014
Ekphrastic Poetry: Writing Poetry about Other Forms of Art
Led by Donna Vorreyer, author of 5 chapbooks and two full-length manuscripts, and Cynthia Gallaher, designated by Chicago Public Library as among its “Ten Top Requested Chicago Poets”
June 28, 2014
The Short Poem
Led by William Marr, author of more than 20 books of poetry and former President, Illinois State Poetry Society, and Patrick Dunn, Associate Professor of English, Aurora University
April 26, 2017
Led by Caroline Johnson, author of two chapbooks, and Wilda Morris, author of Szechwan Shrimp and Fortune Cookies: Poems from a Chinese Restaurant
February 22, 2014
Led by Martha Modena Vertreace-Doody, Distinguished Professor of English and Poet-in-Residence at Kennedy-King College, and Donna Pucciani, widely published, award-winning poet