Eckleburg: What is most rewarding about teaching the craft of writing?
Meg Eden: Being able to tell my students that you can be a writer, and sharing what I’ve learned in my journey thus far as a writer. I love being able to encourage them that their writing is good, that they can publish their work, and that they don’t need an MFA to do it. Getting to see another writer enter the field is the most rewarding experience for me.
Eckleburg: What was/is the most rewarding experience as a student of writing?
Meg Eden: Writing is a field where you’re never a “master” at it–there’s always something new to learn, to improve in, and there’s always new ideas and discoveries to be made. No matter how long I write for, I’ll always find an image that excites and surprises me. Every time I finish a poem, I’m excited to see what the next one will teach me.
Eckleburg: What is your favorite writing exercise or habit?
Meg Eden: I’m currently teaching “Why We Need Litmags”, a course on entering the publishing world, and “The Chapbook Workshop”, a course focused on creating a poetry manuscript. In September, I’ll also be leading a Poetry I workshop, which will walk through some of the essential elements to creating a strong poem, including prompts for inspiration.
My favorite writing exercise is probably the photo prompt. I love using vintage photos from antique stores or online to inspire my writing.
Meg Eden’s work has been published in various magazines, including Rattle, Drunken Boat, Poet Lore, and Gargoyle. Her poem “Rumiko” won the 2015 Ian MacMillan award for poetry, and she has four poetry chapbooks in print. She teaches at the University of Maryland. Check out her work at: www.megedenbooks.com
In this remarkable and unique work, award-winning poet Sarah Arvio gives us a memoir about coming to terms with a life in crisis through the study of dreams.
As a young woman, threatened by disturbing visions, Arvio went into psychoanalysis to save herself. The result is a riveting sequence of dream poems, followed by “Notes.” The poems, in the form of irregular sonnets, describe her dreamworld: a realm of beauty and terror emblazoned with recurring colors and images— gold, bloodred, robin’s-egg blue, snakes, swarms of razors, suitcases, playing cards, a catwalk. The Notes, also exquisitely readable, unfold the meaning of the dreams—as told to her analyst— and recount the enlightening and sometimes harrowing process of unlocking memories, starting with the diaries she burned to make herself forget. Arvio’s explorations lead her back to her younger self—and to a life-changing understanding that will fascinate readers.
An utterly original work of art and a ground- breaking portrayal of the power of dream interpretation to resolve psychic distress, this stunning book illumines the poetic logic of the dreaming mind; it also shows us, with surpassing poignancy, how tender and fragile is the mind of an adolescent girl.
Sarah Arvio’s latest book is night thoughts: 70 dream poems & notes from an analysis, a hybrid work: poetry, essay, memoir. Her earlier books of poems are Visits from the Seventh and Sono: cantos. She has won the Rome Prize and the Bogliasco and Guggenheim fellowships, among other honors. For many years a translator for the United Nations in New York and Switzerland, she has also taught poetry at Princeton. She now lives in Maryland, by the Chesapeake Bay. http://www.saraharvio.com