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Poetry Masterclass with Caroline Bird: The Surreal Truth 26/9/21

I for one can barely tell where I trail off and you begin, since human beings are reported to be 98 percent duct tape and feathers anyway – James Tate

Dive into the surreal, beyond the realistic or currently imaginable to find new truths, to shake out the everyday and all its assumptions – that’s what Caroline Bird’s often wonderfully surreal writing and her inspiring workshops do, and it’s what we need more of as we re-invent ourselves in the 2020s Anthropocene.

We associate poetry with truth… but what does that mean in practice? Should the truth be plain? Should it be hidden? Should poems lie? Is wrestling with truth in a poem like trying to hold a football-sized bubble without bursting it? Or is it something that should stay beneath the surface? Does the truth have anything whatsoever to do with facts? Or is it mainly duct-tape and feathers? Can you tell the truth without exposing a single secret?

In this fast-paced workshop, Caroline will coach you to write several beginnings of poems, short blasts of creativity that will push you into new territories of the subconscious, new poetic worlds.

This is a one-hour workshop with Caroline, followed by writing together with Cath Drake for half an hour where you’ll spend more time on a longer piece inspired by Caroline. They’ll be an opportunity for some writers to share their writing at the conclusion. You’ll be sent a batch of poems from Caroline in advance that will be referred to during the workshop.

I always end up with a really surprising poem from Caroline’s inspirational workshops!

 Caroline Bird is a poet and playwright. She has six collections of poetry published by Carcanet. Her most recent collection, The Air Year, won The Forward Prize for Poetry 2020, and was shortlisted for the Costa Prize and the Polari Prize. Her fifth collection, In These Days of Prohibition, was shortlisted for the 2017 TS Eliot Prize and The Ted Hughes Award. A two-time winner of the Foyles Young Poets Award, her first collection Looking Through Letterboxes was published by Carcanet in 2002 when she was 15. She won an Eric Gregory Award in 2002 and was shortlisted for the Geoffrey Dearmer Prize in 2001 and the Dylan Thomas Prize in 2008 and 2010. She was one of the five official poets at the 2012 London Olympics.

Limited to 23 people only.

 26th September 2021
1.5hrs long
UK 10.30am // Western Australia 5.30pm // Australian EST 7.30pm

A useful link for checking other timezones:

£26 GBP (exchange rate automatically calculated by STRIPE)

Part of the UK/Australia Season of Culture: Who are we now? How can we describe, challenge or create new connections with our land and people in the 2020s? The masterclasses reflect on contemporary approaches to poetic techniques and forms.

If this event sells out, contact me using this form TO BE ADDED TO THE WAITING LIST – I often do draw on the waiting list. Include the name of the workshop.




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Sep 26 2021

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Sep 26 2021




Online (Zoom)
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