The Art of the Poem in Poems of Art: Using Visuals and Close Readings to Aid Creative Writing

Author: Sydney Hunt Coffin


University City High School

Year: 2013

Seminar: Modern and Contemporary American Poetry

Grade Level: 9-12

Keywords: Art, Creative Writing, modern art, poetry

School Subject(s): English, Writing

How are modern art and modern poetry intimately joined together? How can students break from the mold of essay writing with logic and arguments and return to playing with words and phrases based in painting and sculpture? In this unit, students use ekphrastic writing, or writing inspired by art, to mix up their attachments to straight ahead emotional outpourings and get back to form and language-play. Just as the Modernists entreated us to “Make it New!” so are students encouraged to experiment with word order, repetition, and form to make creative writing that mirrors the images with which they are working.

Download Unit: Coffin-Sydney-unit.pdf

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