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Poetry is life distilled. 

–Gwendolyn Brooks

“Historically, studying the craft of BIPOC poets has been seriously overlooked,” says instructor Thea Matthews. “Enough! To learn and write poetry, we must be aware of the literary craft of non-white authors. Together, we will learn from the craft and voice of BIPOC authors of American poetry as the central means to elevate our approach to poetry further.”

In this 5-week class, students will get to re/define their literary canon with poets from diverse backgrounds that have inspired and influenced generations of writers. Beginning with the 20th century, students will read Gwendolyn Brooks to Amiri Baraka / Leroi Jones, then move to more recent poets such as Jericho Brown, Natalie Diaz, and Diana Khoi Nguyen. Students will participate in discussions, meditate on form, and apply discussed literary devices to their writing. There will be opportunities to practice writing in forms such as the duplex and sonnet, and generate new forms while cultivating a new relationship with rhyme and repetition. Each class will hold generative writing time with prompts and exercises based on the reading, and each student will also receive light feedback opportunities from peers and the instructor.

 “This class is great for beginners as well as seasoned writers who seek to enhance their approach to craft, or generate new work,” says Thea. “By the end of the five weeks, we will celebrate our time together with a reading, showcasing your drafted work.”


About The Writing Salon's Remote Classes

You will be able to participate in live class meetings via Zoom videoconference. To attend classes, you'll need a phone, tablet or computer and access to the internet. You can participate in the class from wherever you'd like, whether on your living room couch or in your office. Before your class meets, you'll receive an email from The Writing Salon with more information about Zoom and your remote class. If you have any questions about remote learning, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at hello@writingsalons.com.



    Thea Matthews is a poet, author, and educator originally from San Francisco, California. She holds an MFA in poetry from New York University; and her work has appeared in Southern Indiana Review, Interim, Aster(ix) Journal, Tahoma Literary Review, The New Republic, and others. Her first book Unearth [The Flowers] (Red Light Lit Press, 2020) was listed as part of Kirkus Reviews’s Best Indie Poetry of 2020. She lives in Brooklyn. 

  1. Live Zoom Meeting: Saturday, February 18, 2:00pm-4:30pm
  2. Live Zoom Meeting: Saturday, February 25, 2:00pm-4:30pm
  3. Live Zoom Meeting: Saturday, March 04, 2:00pm-4:30pm
  4. Live Zoom Meeting: Saturday, March 11, 2:00pm-4:30pm
  5. Live Zoom Meeting: Saturday, March 18, 2:00pm-4:30pm
  • Thea provided wonderful resources and an aspirational reading list that I'll be pulling from for a long time. My personal canon has truly been transformed, and I'm grateful for Thea's guidance. She has also pushed me to become a better poet, and given me the tools to continue that journey. I appreciate the safe space she created for all of us to share our work. I particularly appreciated her direct feedback style and the trust-filled environment she created for us.

    Nisha A.


Saturday, February 18, 2023 @ 10:00 pm PST
Saturday, March 18, 2023 @ 11:30 pm PST
Event Categories:


Thea Matthews


Online (BK Zoom)
Live Remote Meetings, ZOOM
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Cancellation Policy

10 days or more before the start date for a class, the registrant will receive a credit minus a 10% fee OR a refund minus a 20% fee.

3-9 days before the start date for a class, the registrant will receive a credit minus a 20% fee OR a refund minus a 30% fee.

2 days or less before the start date for a class, the registrant will not receive a credit or a refund.

The Writing Salon cannot offer refunds, credits, or makeup sessions for classes a student might miss.

In the event of an emergency, we may consider a refund or credit, whether partial or full. We review these requests on a case-by-case basis, and we ask that you notify us as near as possible to the start date for the class.

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