This class will be an immersion in the craft of writing poetry. We’ll look at several contemporary poems, paying close attention to structural elements like meter, assonance, refrain, and the poet’s management of the verse line. Above all, we’ll be asking how each poem establishes expectations in the reader’s mind, and then either gratifies or subverts those expectations. There will also be a few brief in-class writing exercises that will give participants the opportunity to apply these techniques in first-draft poems of their own. James Arthur’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, The London Review of Books, Poetry, The American Poetry Review, and Ploughshares. His first book, Charms Against Lightning, was published in 2012 by Copper Canyon Press. He has received the Amy Lowell Travelling Poetry Scholarship, a Hodder Fellowship, a Stegner Fellowship, and a Fulbright Scholarship to the Seamus Heaney Centre in Northern Ireland. Arthur lives in Baltimore, where he teaches at Johns Hopkins University. During the summer of 2017, he is in residence at the Al Purdy A-frame in Ameliasburgh.