Hoa Nguyen


Hoa Nguyen is the author of five books and more than a dozen chapbooks, including Violet Engery Ingots (Wave Books, 2016, shortlisted for the 2017 Griffin Prize),  Tells of the Crackling (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2015), Red Juice: Poems 1998-2008 (Wave 2014), and As Long As Trees Last (Wave, 2012). With her husband, the poet Dale Smith, she founded the small press and journal Skanky Possum.  Nguyen lives in Toronto where she teaches poetics in a private workshop and at Ryerson University, as well as Miami University and Bard College.  

 Author Website              Poetry Foundation            Academy of American Poets         

Talk:  Twist: Narrative's Double in Poetry and Popular Culture         

In this talk, Hoa Nguyen addresses poetry as a site of simultaneous struggle and recovery. She begins with a 1976 talk by poet Robert Duncan called "Warp and Woof," seeing in poetry's structure what Duncan calls "double events," a woven tapestry of competing terms. Nguyen's meditation situates poetry in an international context of Vietnamese folks songs, southern US ballads, North American punk, and Delta Blues where artists can be seen performing a range of cross-cultural defiance, political acknowledgment, and social crossings. One 1-hour talk


In this series of writing workshops, we will struggle with and confront history, place, and possession(s) as we form creative answers to how works of art may act as a practice of resistance and recovery. As we engage modes and invite entry into enhanced receptivity to creatively address what Fred Moten calls modernity’s socio-ecological disaster, participants in this workshop will become familiar with and enact inventive writing strategies with suggestions and prompts to enact future writing.

This is also a workshop that will “work” and our works will take shape via reading, listening, speaking, and interacting as we develop in-class writings and arrive at a shared critical vocabulary. Methods will include utilizing music, other texts, trance work, Oulipo and surrealist techniques, the symbols of dreams, tarot, myth, and fairytales—and more—we will engage modes and invite portals into enhanced receptivity to face the “Angel of History”. 

The workshop will include revision strategies, critical poetic terms and concepts, plus a bibliography of texts and author names for future reading.  Four 3-hour workshops (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday mornings)


Walter Benjamin   “Theses on the Philosophy of History”     https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/benjamin/1940/history.htm

Aimé Césaire     Five Poems       http://bombmagazine.org/article/423/five-poems

          - A Poetics of Anti-colonialism (essay on Césaire’s “Discourse on Colonialism”)   http://monthlyreview.org/1999/11/01/a-poetics-of-anticolonialism/

          - “Discourse on Colonialism”      http://abahlali.org/files/_Discourse_on_Colonialism.pdf

          - “Notebook of a Return to a Native Land”    

          - https://kboo.fm/sites/default/files/AIME%20CESAIRENOTEBOOK%20OF%20A%20RETURN%20TO%20A%20NATIVE%20LAND. pdf

Amiri BarakaLecture on Olson and Sun Ra      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWx6Sp6YSm4

Charles Olson     “Projective Verse”    http://www.poetryfoundation.org/learning/essay/237880


Fred Wah,  Aimé Césaire,  Joanne Kyger,   Harryette Mullen


Lorine Niedecker Sei Shonagen Amiri Baraka Alice Notley

  • Addressing the ongoing effects of imperialism, colonialism, and globalism inside of modernity

  • How can the writing expose, grapple with, or struggle against effects of modernity

  • Rhetorical strategies as ways into the engaging the work

    “Poetic knowledge is born in the great silence of scientific knowledge.” Aimé Césaire, 1944

  • Open field poetics, classical meter: working with and against forms

  • Revision strategies


The Concise Oxford Diction of English Etymology, T. F. Hoad     An Etymological Dictionary of the English Language, Walter Skeat        Classical Dictionary, John Lempriere