How To Write Poetry

How To Write Poetry

by Cynthia Sharp


Publisher David Carlyle

Published in Reference/Writing, Research & Publishing Guides, Reference/Writing, Nonfiction

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Book Description


The Zen of Poetry – A beginner’s guide to sensory writing with authentic meaning and story. How to Write Poetry provides a quick series of lessons for weekend workshops and individuals at home. It's intentionally concise, although extra tips are freely available on the How to Write Poetry website

Sample Chapter

Sensory Writing


Whiteboard, whiteboard markers, dry erase eraser, copies of the lesson and worksheets for each participant, pictures of local scenery, vocabulary words written on flashcards that convey meaning through pictures and colour translated into participants’ first language when possible, baskets of local sensory items, such as: bamboo, bark, beeswax candle, blooms, candlelight, carving, flower, fur, hedgehog, jade, leaf, pinecones, ridges, rock, sage, stone, sweetgrass, turtle, quartz.


The instructor welcomes participants. We go around the circle with each person introducing himself or herself. Then, a volunteer reads the opening poem about paying attention to the beauty of nature. The poem is read a few times.

Breathe Deeply Nature’s Inner World

Breathe deeply moments in the stillness, what the moss on the maple tells us, or each angle of sunlight reveals, and remember to let the trees and flowers and colours speak.

There may be discussion about slowing down and relaxing in nice places and observing details. Good writing uses details. We can pretend that parts of nature have a story to tell us and that it’s our job to listen and write it down.


Excerpted from "How To Write Poetry" by Cynthia Sharp. Copyright © 2014 by Cynthia Sharp. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Cynthia Sharp

Cynthia Sharp

Cynthia Sharp has been published and broadcast internationally. Her poetry has appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies on five continents and was nominated for the Pushcart Prize & Best of the Net Anthology. She enjoys the beauty of nature on the west coast, where she is at work on her newest poetry collection.

View full Profile of Cynthia Sharp

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