Level Three

1. Reread your journal entries from the Level One and Two exercises. Add new relationships and encounters as needed to your lists, recording what has occurred in your love life since you did the Level Two exercise. Look for patterns in the three lists — incidents of arguments, growth, loss, gain — anything entailing risk or enlightenment. Write about each pattern in a passage in your journal and base ideas for five poems on them.

2. Now evaluate the new entries to your lists of relationships and encounters —the people and/or events involved in your love life since you did the Level Two assignment. Write about each person or incident in a passage in your journal and base ideas for five more poems on them.

Chapter Three

Nature and Environmental Poetry

If a poem is set in the world, it is in part a nature poem. But what qualifies verse to be included in this category so that the reader's first impulse is to identify it within a specific genre? Poems about the seasons, plants, animals — all these are common enough in the literary canon — but others, concerning humans, are more subtle. For instance, is this poem by Ann Townsend an example of love or nature poetry?

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