Tate Modern Course

Writing poetry: Taking a line for a walk Led by award winning poet Pascale Petit

Paul Klee, ‘Burdened Children’ 1930
Paul Klee, Burdened Children 1930. Tate
Paul Klee, ‘Burdened Children’ 1930
Paul Klee
Burdened Children 1930

First lines are a gift. We don’t always know what is coming next, where the journey of the poem will lead us. In this six-week course the group follow Paul Klee’s advice of ‘taking a line for a walk’, paying attention to where the poem wants to go, what colour and tone it wants to be, and embark on surprising adventures with language and image. Course participants are also guided by the artist Mira Schendel’s magical explorations of texts, alphabets, scribbles and ‘writings’ in space and on rice paper.

Entirely based in the galleries at Tate Modern, participants spend two sessions in both the Paul Klee and Mira Schendel exhibitions, as well as working in the permanent displays. Contemporary poems by leading poets are used as models to inspire writing.

Here is a chance to encounter Tate Modern’s unique setting in the evening when the galleries are quiet, when engaging closely with international masterpieces to develop poetry in unexpected directions.

This course is suitable for writers with some experience of poetry workshops. Ticket price includes drinks afterwards.

Pascale Petit’s fifth poetry collection What the Water Gave Me: Poems after Frida Kahlo was shortlisted for both the T.S. Eliot Prize and Wales Book of the Year. It was a Book of the Year in the Observer. Her next collection Fauverie, due in 2014, has received an Arts Council of England award while in progress. She has had three books shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize. A Next Generation poet, she has been Poetry Editor of Poetry London and was a founding tutor of The Poetry School.

Tate Modern

London SE1 9TG
Plan your visit


Every Monday at 18.45–20.15 and 18.45–20.15 and 18.45–20.15 and 18.45–20.15 and 18.45–20.15 and 18.45–20.15

21 October – 25 November 2013

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