due Wed Sep 6: original poem #1

Original Poem#1—further explanation of assignment (due Wed Sep 6; at least 16 lines)

The general subject of this poem is human connection to, or distance from, each other.

In his poem “Ars Poetica?” Czeslaw Milosz says poetry reminds us how hard it is not to be connected to other human beings. It’s not natural for us to remain separate from each other.

Robert Frost, in his poem “Mending Wall,” claims that to detach ourselves from one another is unnatural. His poem begins with this statement: “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall.

John Keats wrote an Italian sonnet called “To My Brothers.”  In his poem, Keats wishes that he and his brothers can have more evenings like this one—peacefully spent together by the quiet fireside.

Newspapers as recent as today’s  make mention of the border wall between the US and Mexico.

In the student writings called “I used to think but now I think,” many people said they used to think of Jekyll and Hyde as two separate people but now they think of these two beings as part of the same, single person.

Lastly, I wonder about the core reason Jekyll wants to separate himself from morality. Why does he try to do this? What basic impulse drives this attempt? In other words, what detaches him from morality? In this question, I hear an echo of Milosz’s observation that poetry reminds us how hard it is to remain just one person—i.e., to live as just one person not connected to any other persons.

SO, in this original poem of yours, somehow use the idea of connection as your subject, or as your starting point. Since separation is the opposite of connection, you might start with, or focus on, that idea. Though I am not sure either of the Rilke poems (“The Panther” or “The Gazelle”) fit this assignment, they do show you some poetic tools to try—for example, the ones named in our table of contents, as well as others like concrete imagery.

OK, enough. You have a conceptual focus, several published poems for reference, and a handful of tools to try out. Good luck. Have fun. Take advantage of the time given to compose the original poem. Feel free to come by my office for help, advice, or feedback. Your poem is due to TURNITIN (human connection poem) before class on Wed Sep 6 (next Day 8).


agenda Thu Aug 24: Poetry Day 1

learning goal: what various effects can run-on lines produce in a poem?

distribute day’s sheets

fill in table of contents for today: Milosz, Horace, Rilke; ars poetica, alliteration, run-on line, hyperbole

Jekyll warm-up: five-line poem

share warm-up poems with others

complete ars poetica section

Observe and consider today’s poems–use OCC sheet

share observations considerations

description of first original-poem assignment (due by next Poetry Day, Day 8)



due Thu Aug 24: bring your Poetry Folder to Poetry Day (Day 8)

bring your Poetry Folder

AND be sure to submit the Jekyll & Hyde Stage 2 writing* to TURNITIN before next class (Thu Aug 24), if you did not do so during Tuesday’s class


*This is the same document you submitted last Friday–with a horizontal line drawn under that text.  Below the line write a paragraph (of about 200 words) that explains to you and me how your thinking about Dr. Jekyll, or the story as a whole, has evolved as a result of your group’s conversation.  Submit this new, longer document to TURNITIN.  It will include both Friday and Monday’s writing.

agenda Tue 22 Aug: I used to think . . .

learning goal: in what particular way(s) has conversation with classmates affected my thinking about struggles and monsters in the story of Jekyll and Hyde?


at the start of class: hand in the previously-assigned ten-sentence exercise*

re-locate the one passage (that you marked) that anchors your paragraph

small-group exercise: last-word exercise (present–1–1–2, present–1–1–2, etc.)

individual writing: I used to think . . .  (specific instructions TBA)

submit new writing to TURNITIN (J & H stage 2)


*”hmwrk:  copy out ten sentences from “Henry Jekyll’s Full Statement of the Case” that, in sequence, lay out the bones of Dr. Jekyll’s struggle; bring these ten sentences on paper to class Tue Aug 22  (type or legibly handwrite the sentences)”

agenda Fri Aug 18: EQs for J&H; I used to think . . .

learning goal: one idea about an aspect of “J & H” that you had not seen or understood before today’s discussion

Turnitin enrollment* and template

writing:  EQs for Dr. J (paragraph)

research/review: find one passage that anchors your paragraph

small-group exercise: last-word exercise (present–1–1–3, present–1–1–3, etc.)

I used to think . . .


enrollment info

E block:  enrollment key–1718e;  class ID–15960962

F block:  enrollment key–1718f;  class ID–15961032


hmwrk:  copy out ten sentences from “Henry Jekyll’s Full Statement of the Case” that, in sequence, lay out the bones of Dr. Jekyll’s struggle; bring these ten sentences on paper to our next class



agenda W/Th Aug 16/17: EQs, J&H

learning goal: what are this course’s essential questions*

name tags

Poetry Day Table of Contents / Weekly Topics

Essential Questions (EQs)*

Canvas/blog (bookmark blog, and sign-up to follow by email)

in class: J & H, summarize & paraphrase



  1. How do we handle struggle–external and internal?

2. Where do we see demons, or monsters? (What makes them so?)

3. What influences our responses to these demons and struggles?