Writing Medea

Language, Feeling, Voice

This practitioner-focussed session will ask: how do we construct voice on the page? What is the relationship between the formal dimension of a poem – sonnet, dramatic monologue, narrative or lyric – and the construction of a voice? To what extent is a voice the ‘grain’, as Barthes says, or trace of a living, feeling body in the language of a poem? How might we read the white space of the page as part of the effect of a poem – the way it annotates, perhaps, its own breaths? Ben Morgan will discuss writing a sequence of poems spoken by the mythic figure Medea, describing the process of developing her voice and of finding ways to narrate the story from within her own mental and intellectual universe, the world of late-antique nature and goddess cult.

Vision of Medea 1828 by Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775-1851

J. M. W. Turner, ‘Vision of Medea’, 1828, Tate Gallery