If you aren’t able to attend all four sessions, contact Oasis ( to register with a prorated fee.

Grab a mug, pull up a cozy chair, and prepare to be inspired by some of America’s most iconic poets.  We’ll deepen our appreciation and broaden our understanding of poetry by closely reading the work of Maya Angelou, William Carlos Williams, Langston Hughes, and Elizabeth Bishop, four poets represented in Planet Word’s immersive galleries. This four-session course will explore the sounds, rhythms, and literary techniques that make these poems so rich, memorable, and meaningful.
Limit:  25
Planet Word is a new museum of words and language in Washington, DC. Learn more at

Session one will focus on the essential building block of poetry: sound. We will spend time with the work of Maya Angelou to discover the inner working of a rhyme, and how vowels and consonants make poems sing.

For session number two, our focus will shift to the rhythms of poetry. William Carlos Williams will be our guide as we explore how poets use syllables, stress, and even the arrangement of words on the page to craft the pacing and tone of their poems.

In our third session, we’ll visit the Harlem Renaissance, exploring comparison and contrast in the work of Langston Hughes. We’ll examine simile, metaphor, and juxtaposition in two of his most widely-read poems, “Dreams” and “Harlem,” as well as in his earlier work.
For our fourth and final session, we’ll dissect two classic poetic forms: the sonnet and the villanelle. We’ll look at Elizabeth Bishop’s work in the sonnet form, and close with her iconic villanelle, “One Art.”