Led by Adeena Karasick
Welcome to the KlezKanda Poetry Retreat! In keeping with the theme of this year, the Renaissance, the 5th year of the Poetry Retreat will feature a week of poetry workshops, seminars, master classes and performances that track through both historic and aesthetic notions of re-naissance, méconaissance, and the re-visioning and reformulation of language and language use. We will be joined by musicians with whom participants will be encouraged to collaborate and perform on the final night.
Participants are invited to immerse themselves in music, dance, art, film and theater workshops, at one of the most widely renowned world music festivals in North America, with all-star faculty from around the globe. In the past, our students have collaborated on independent projects with other poets, musicians, and dancers. The retreat culminates with a festival-wide performance, and a pressing of a personalized chapbook collecting all of the work created over the course of the week. Come celebrate with world-class Klezmer concerts, readings, parties, performances, and private instruction in the gorgeous Laurentian mountain setting.
The works of our students have been published in the Forward (see http://blogs.staging6.forward.com/the-arty-semite/191417/jewish-poets-in-the-woods/ and http://blogs.forward.com/the-arty-semite/187497/music-and-the-laws-of-poetry/) – a tradition we certainly hope to continue, expanding to features in both national and international publications.
POETRY RETREAT SCHEDULE
TUESDAY, AUGUST 22:
Re-visions and Re-formulations
Whether its Marlowe’s, Jew of Malta or Shakespeare’s, “Hath Not a Jew Eyes”, Renaissance poetry has been marked by disturbingly antisemetic moments. Using contemporary avant garde vizpo elements, such as black-out techniques, over-writing, oulippean technologies, and homophonic translations, we will compose responses, re-working these Renaissance poems / re-visioning, re-formulating revolutionizing, and “make them new”.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 23:
Excess, Abundance, Ornament and Transgression
The Renaissance was marked by a sense of ornamentation and excess. As such, we will use Jewish Renaissance paintings as the basis for writing, semantically, aesthetically, viscerally reveling in aspects of excess, invention, luxuriance, play and splendor. Additionally, we will negotiate aspects of past and present, through a close reading and re-visioning of the highly “ornamented” 15th C. Shulchan Aruch (Code of Jewish Law) and create list poems of New Laws.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 24:
Language Circuits and Rebirthed Meaning
Under the influence of the mystical renaissance in 16th-century Safed, Lurianism became the near-universal mainstream Jewish theology in the early-modern era, both in scholarly circles, and in the popular imagination. With reference to Lurianic poesis (aspects of tzimtzum, the sefirotic system, shevirat- haKelim and gilgul), and a shout-out to Galileo and Copernican notion of epicycles and deferents), we will explore the history of mystical and scientific ideas re-birthed through language experiments.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 25:
In honor of the printing press, this day will feature writing focusing on the physicality materiality of language / of the book as object / the book unbound, the book beyond the book, as site of transgression and revolution. Drawing on the ways books played a crucial role throughout philosophy, history and aesthetics, and working across disciplines, using a wide range of materials, textures, bindings and verbal-visual visions; sculpted out of the work created during the week, we will create chapbooks that explore an intermediatic textatic space, celebrating language’s inherent viscerality, how form, is always-already, an extension of content, and how the book itself as a site of revolution.