The Poetry Project


Smooth Ghosts — 5-Session Workshop with Jared Stanley

Lately I’ve been reading (and watching and listening to) lots of horror, weird stories, uncanny trash, and fuzzy poems — the kind of stuff where reality looks formal and organized just before it bends or explodes or melts. Maybe it has something to do with the feeling that the smoothness of the internet, its look of sufficiency, is fatally rubbing up against an undreamt-of reality. It feels like a good, stinky time for poetry to be haunted by the real. In this five-week workshop, we’ll read and write and talk about the smooth surface, the furriness of mold, the traces of horror in the heaps of normative grammar that pile up, softly, like dirty laundry. Along the way, we’ll devise some methods, tactics, and rituals to invite a spirit to hover into that smoothness and rot just a little more — perhaps some presence like that can explain a few things.