Poet Laureate of Your Own Life



Course is closed. Stay tuned for future classes by subscribing here.

Would you like to become the Poet Laureate of your own life?

We’re already the noticers of the small details, the “tag-you’re-it” play between dust and light, the very particular way a loved one throws her head back as she laughs, how the temperature dropped and the wind blew ice-cold the morning your best friend moved away.

So we’re already partway there.

As Poet Laureate, we’ll also make decisions about the form our poetry will take and what we’ll share and how we’ll share it. How often and how much. We will need to be brave and sturdy in our bones because not everyone gets poetry and not everyone loves it (the way we do) so we’ll need to decide to be okay with that.

Consider this process: to design one’s own life, to break-dance in its brightness, to observe and appreciate moments of exquisite beauty, to meet crushing disappointment and shards of heartbreak with stubborn gladness, and to share all of that with others. That seems like a divine calling. A spiritual practice. And well worth the risk.

Here’s the thing with poetry: it does not need to be published in a literary journal or posted in a blog. You can whisper your poems to your partner over scrambled eggs or rap them in the car with your kid on the way to Girl Guides. {Actually, I’m thinking of an Ode to Girl Guide Cookies right now.} You can write a poem on the back of a postcard, or make a movie out of it, or a quilt. Poems definitely do not need to rhyme… or even use words.

And no, your life is not boring. Those moments that you consider mundane… somebody, somewhere finds them fascinating. Somebody somewhere loves those kinds of poems. Lives for them. Wants to publish them in their own heart.

Start with the conviction that your life is worthy of having a Poet Laureate, and that you are entitled to the position of esteemed story teller.

So sing your poem-songs of absurd joy, embarrassment and longing. Sing, you Poet Laureate of Yourself.

Here’s how this course will work.

Daily reflection and poetry prompt
Over 20 weekdays, Poet Laureates will receive a daily email with:
* a poetic reflection of one item from the job description of a Poet Laureate
* an illustration drawn by a super-creative Grade 1 student
* a poetry prompt

Facebook Group
There will be a private + {top} secret Facebook group for people who want to share their writing with other Poet Laureates. Feedback will be positive and celebratory in nature. Participation in this group is absolutely optional.

The course will run from Monday 12 September to Friday 7 October, 2016.

The cost is 40 USD.

This course is for you if:
* you have a poetry-shaped hole in your life {like I do}…
* you’d like to play and experiment with words in a low risk way…
* you’d like to spend some time thinking about your own story…
* you’d like to make some joyful word-noise…
* you have experience or not. All you need is the desire to play with words, meaning, sounds and rhythm. I’ll provide you with some very basic instructions but the fun in this course is to find your own way and not worry about whether you are doing it right. For our purposes, there’s no wrong way to write a poem.

This course is probably not for you if:
* you believe that there is a right and wrong way to write poetry
* you are looking for critiques of your writing

What previous Poet Laureates have said about the course:

Poet Laureate of Your Own Life was my favourite “thing to do for me” last year! The course was a unique opportunity to share creative space with supportive, like-minded women and to explore personal moments and circumstances in my life in a creative (and at times very playful) way. My favourite thing was the varied prompts…every one of them caught me in an unexpected way, and I loved that! Writing poems on demand, sharing them, and learning to ignore that inner critic, at least a little bit, were all wonderful parts of the whole experience; I grew from participating in this course. I believe that people should be the poet laureates (or the storytellers) of their own lives; that each of us should have a voice, and that we should find places to be free to explore and play with that voice.
~ Karen Flello, British Columbia

Because you were encouraged to write a poem a day, you didn’t have to worry about your poem being perfect. You were inspired, wrote and then shared. No worries about constantly editing and never “finishing” the poem. This course was the first time I had ever written a poem and I now have a little writing journal of 11.
~ Aimee Hill, Japan

Poet Laureate of Your Own Life was a memorable event which continues to ripple in my consciousness. The talent of the other writers and their many beautiful offerings never ceased to amaze and inspire. I especially enjoyed the challenge of each assignment with Monna’s inspirational resources and links. I would have never considered writing about many of the exercise topics, but the process resulted in such loveliness, it has skewed the way I see things. This course continues to affect me – in that, I find the everyday doings of my life now hold the potential of transformation. A walk down a trail is no longer just a walk. It is an invitation to observe the shifting of the wind and the blueness of a Kingfisher’s feathers under a setting sun. I highly recommend it.
~ Linda Kriss, Washington

I would recommend Poet Laureate of Your Own Life to a friend because it gives you a jolt of creativity in the same amount of time it takes you to drink a latte.
~ Nancy Norton, Paris

Poet Laureate was a delicious, month long poetic immersion, a celebration of the beauty of language and of our individual creative gifts. I had no idea when I started that I had so many poems inside me. This course is a wonderful gift for your creative soul.
~ Sally Morgan, British Columbia

Are you in, Poet Laureate?