William Stafford—A Course in Creative Writing

A Course in Creative Writing

They want a wilderness with a map—
but how about errors that give a new start?—
or leaves that are edging into the light?—
or the many places a road can’t find?

Maybe there’s a land where you have to sing
to explain anything: you blow a little whistle
just right and the next tree you meet is itself.
(And many a tree is not there yet.)

Things come toward you when you walk.
You go along singing a song that says
where you are going becomes its own
because you start. You blow a little whistle—

And a world begins under the map.

—William Stafford

Also see William Stafford—You and Art

3 Responses to “William Stafford—A Course in Creative Writing”

  1. INSPIRATION, a poem by Nathanael Chawkin « The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] idea of allowing, even encouraging writing to come spontaneously reminds me of a poem written by William Stafford—A Course in Creative Writing, in response to educators at a conference expecting writing instructors to clearly spell out how […]


  2. Don Draper Goes To The Movies | shift+7 Says:

    […] the person I was when I was writing before. I wasn’t in the same body. I wasn’t walking the same world. It’s hard to give a perfect description of what happened. There was the disillusionment of […]


  3. Billy Collins suggests more creative ways to respond to poetry than analyzing it to death | The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] That’s how he wrote poems, early every morning. Enjoy reading these William Stafford poems, A Course in Creative Writing, and You and […]


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