Hands and Feet: Poetry Derby Workshop

Our Poetry Derby prioritizes a playful approach to language and form, capitalizing on the fact that horses are measured in hands and poems are traditionally measured in feet. In keeping with the horsey theme, participants will write modified sonnets of 16 lines (rather than 14) as a nod to the average height of thoroughbreds (16 hands). That said, poems' contents do NOT have to be horse-themed. The three workshops will include an introduction to the sonnet form and poetic meter, writing exercises, and an opportunity to share work. Workshops will be on the following times:

Thursday, January 17 at 3:00-4:30
Thursday, February 21 at 3:00-4:30
Thursday, March 7 at 3:00-4:30

The Jan. 17 workshop is the first in a series of instructional sessions in anticipation of the Poetry Derby, a public reading and award ceremony on April 22nd at Churchill Downs. Writers will be invited to submit poems to be considered for the Poetry Derby from March 1-15.

The Commonwealth Center for Humanities and Society is pleased to partner with the Derby Museum, the UofL Department of English, and JCPS on the Poetry Derby workshops.

Thursday, January 17 at 3:00pm to 4:30pm

Churchill Downs, Kentucky Derby Museum 704 Central Ave, Louisville, KY 40208

Event Type

Arts, Academic, Service


Students, Faculty/staff, Public


Arts & Sciences, Commonwealth Center for the Humanities and Society, English, Arts & Culture Partnerships, Center for, College of Arts & Sciences




poetry, derby, horses, creativewriting

Contact Name

Brandon J Harwood

Contact Phone Number


Contact Email


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University of Louisville

2301 S. 3rd St.

University of Louisville

Louisville, Kentucky 40292

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(502) 852-6171

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