A Sharper Vision

By Brenda Ives

I completed the Coursera Sharpened Visions: A Poetry Workshop. The last assignment was revising one of my draft poems for peer review. Putting all that I learned about sound, rhyme, rhythm, enjambment, metaphor and imagery to give the poem greater punch. I also applied the suggestions from peer reviews. The poem I selected to revise and submit for a final peer review was ” My Favorite Aunt”. It was a good process for me to have another look and improve the work.

Peer Review

I was not the great fan of peer review in this course. Some of the poems I was asked to review were very difficult to positively critique. In about half of the poems I reviewed, my peers had not applied the literary device learned that week. This made it difficult to provide a review because I do not know much about poetry and that is why I took this beginner course! Everything I learned about poetry comes from the Coursera lessons. I do not know why the poems submitted to review were not as assigned, but my guess is that with many international students perhaps some meaning was lost in translation. Two of the peer reviews of my poem were obviously completed by adding random letters into the comment fields, just to fill those fields with something to allow the reviewer to press send. To complete the workshop portion of the course student must review at least 2 poems with comments.

On the other hand, when my peers did submit a poem written within the parameters of the workshop assignment, it was a great opportunity to revisit the lesson and the literary device and then judge how effectively thar person applied the device to the poem.

Practicing Poetry

Creating poetry takes thoughtful energy. I admit I have been distracted from practicing poetry writing for good reason. I needed to complete the Summary of Learning for EC & I 831 and a Critical Activism instructional plan for EC & I 822 . These are the last two classes I need to successfully to receive the Masters of Education, a goal I have worked toward for the last five years. With those 2 assignments checked off the task list I can focus on a little poetry reading and writing. Stay tuned for my wrap up of this Major Learning project. I leave you with two poems. A lipogram that I wrote that only uses the letter ‘e’ . Yes this is an actual genre of poetry writing. The second is a short poem from the app Poetry out loud.

Verse in Key of E

By Brenda Ives



Eden seeks Steven.

Fresh beef essence,

Deep decent gent,

Yet rebel street presence.



Steven meets Eden.

Meek mess, ever.

Teen queen lesser.

Me merge? Her? Never!



Eden prefers Steven.

She senses strength expressed.

Steven rejects Eden.

He vents. She’s been a pest he detests.



Eden tells Steven,

She feels the velvet breeze

Deepened creed, strengthened need.

Steven’s the effervescent bees’ knees!



Steven heckles Eden’s tender decree.

Senseless Eden expects Steven’s cheer.

Heedless, Steven severs the weld Eden sees.

Steven freezes her. He frees her.

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