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Poetry with Dr. Chris Leche

Poetry with Dr. Chris Leche

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Taught by Dr. Chris Leche, Author, Outside the Wire American Soldiers’ Voices from Afghanistan.

October 21-24 TWThF 11:00AM-1:00PM
Austin Community College – Eastview
Room 8106 (location may change throughout the week)
Register here.

Christine Dumaine Leche, PhD. in creative writing and 20th century literature, spent many years teaching American soldiers college courses in English, Creative Writing, and Literature for the University of Maryland-Europe. Not only did she teach on bases in Germany, Italy, Spain, and Honduras, but she also taught deployed soldiers in Bosnia, Kosovo, and for a year in Afghanistan.  When soldiers in one of her creative writing classes on Bagram Airbase asked whether their work might be published in a book, she made it her mission to see their dream come true. Outside the Wire: Soldiers Voices from Afghanistan was published in 2013 by University of Virginia Press. Chris’ poems have appeared in the The Massachusetts ReviewNimrod International JournalLouisiana Literature, and many others. From 2002-2005 she was Director of Arts and Humanities for University of Maryland-Europe. She was recently a finalist for the prestigious Rona Jaffe Award in poetry.


Workshop Description

You need no prior experience writing poetry to participate in this workshop!  For the most part we will read, talk about, and write poems that tell a story—narrative poems. Your lines need not even rhyme (although you may if you prefer)! And of course you may choose any topics you like as subjects for your poems. No need to write about your military experience!! As an example, however, take a look at the opening lines by award winning poet/soldier Brian Turner who served in Iraq in 2005 with 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. Turner also writes poems that have nothing to do with his military experience:


Perimeter Watch  (excerpt)
Brian Turner

I lock the doors tonight, check the bolts twice
just to make sure. Turn off all the lights.
Only the fan blades rotate above, slow as helicopters
winding down their oily gears.

. . . . . . . . . . . .


Photo credit Korey Howell