Renga, meaning “linked poem,” began over seven hundred years ago in Japan to encourage the collaborative composition of poems. Come take part on Tuesday, April 24, from 3-5 p.m. at the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Poets work in pairs or small groups, taking turns composing the alternating three-line and two-line stanzas. Linked together, renga were often hundreds of lines long, though the favored length was a 36-line form called a kasen. Several centuries after its inception, the opening stanza of renga gave rise to the much shorter haiku.
3-5 pm| Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 135 Main Street
Workshop limited to 24 participants. Please register by calling the library at 223-3338.
Thematic elements of renga are perhaps most crucial to the poem’s success. The language is often pastoral, incorporating words and images associated with seasons, nature, and love. In order for the poem to achieve its trajectory, each poet writes a new stanza that leaps from only the stanza preceding it. This leap advances both the thematic movement as well as maintaining the linking component. The form has become a popular method for teaching students to write poetry while working together.
Susan Reid is a great relative newcomer to poetry, and considers herself totally addicted to the writing process. She writes several poems a week, and sends them to a list of over 100 recipients, Recently, she was selected to participate in the Tupelo Press 30/30 project, writing a poem a day for the month of January. By tradition, the poets selected each month write a Renga, Susan had fun doing this, and thought other writers might enjoy it.