There’s No Place Like Poems: The Art of Reading Verse with Courage, Heart & Smarts (In Person)

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood:
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Taught by Danielle Gasparro

Danielle Gasparro is a Brooklyn & Hudson River Valley-based wordsmith, songsmith, and teaching artist. She holds an MFA in Poetry from New England College and a BA in Creative Writing with honors from Florida State University. Having dedicated nearly two decades to performing,recording, and building an avid national and UK following as a performing songwriter, in 2018, Gasparro shifted her creative life & lens to her work as a literary artist. Her writing has been published in The Kudzu Review, The Daily Palette, Chronogram, Shift: A Journal of Literary Oddities, The Red Wheelbarrow, Poet of the Week (with Brooklyn Poets) and elsewhere. A passionate educator and self-proclaimed “uncaped crusader of verse,” Gasparro partners regularly with public libraries and arts and education organizations to present a wide variety of popular programs and talks aimed at demystifying poetry. Independently, she leads online poetry classes and works in private, one-on-one mentorship with adult writing students, all the while “daylighting” as a K-12 substitute teacher with New York City Public Schools. Gasparro is currently pursuing a “sibling” MFA, with a creative nonfiction focus, through Naropa University’s Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, where she serves as the 2023-24 Graduate Teaching Assistant and is developing a hybrid memoir that fuses poetry, nonfiction and photography. Learn more and sample her voice & visions at:

Thursday, October 19, 6:30-9:00pm

Location: Prospect Heights Brainery (190 Underhill Ave in Prospect Heights, BK)

This is a recurring class that meets the 3rd Thursday of the month! 

Do you walk in fear of poetry, yet also feel drawn to its imaginative charms and long to befriend it? Perhaps even waltz right up to its mystifying form and invite it inside for a cup of morning brew? If so—this intimate evening of scholarly delight is for you! 

It’s no secret that great poems can, and often do, demand a lot from our curious, meaning-seeking minds. Still, as Elizabeth Alexander noted, "Poetry is the human voice—are we not of interest to each other?” Whether a well-crafted line of verse calls us to more truthfully explore and interact with the world around us or deep within us, poetry can seize our hearts, stir our souls, and enrich our lives like no other art form.

In this immersive, eye-opening class, you'll be empowered with the skills, spirit, and sensitivity that’s needed to pull back the curtain on any poem's word-wizardry and get to know the unifying human truths, ideas, questions, and emotions that kindle at its core. Each month, we’ll take close, meaningful looks at masterful works—both celebrated and lesser known—and investigate the poetic devices that are powering their artistry across three major categories of craft: language, imagery, and musicality. Through compelling short lectures, guided discussions, impassioned readings, curated video clips, and instructive writing exercises, you’ll leave each class with a newfound collection of “Aha!”- and “Aaaaaah”-powered moments to cherish and tuck inside the hope chest of your poetsoul.

Please note that both readers—and writers—of all experience and interest levels will benefit from taking this class! In the words of Mary Oliver: “To write well it is entirely necessary to read widely and deeply. Good poems are the best teachers. Perhaps they are the only teachers.”

Seating for this discussion-centered class will be limited to 13 participants, so register today! Ticket price includes a customized printed packet of curated poems and instructional materials, all yours for the taking and revisiting.

Cancellation policy