Planning a Poetry Retreat

My friend, Debbie Scott, co-owner and Director of the new Mountain Light Retreat Center, wants to have a Poetry Retreat. She asked me if I knew anyone to recommend. I told her about the man who runs our monthly Read and Critique group and is a published poet.

Mountain Light Retreat Banner

Before I contacted him, I asked her what some of her expectations for the retreat were

  • Small initial group
  • Modest charge to ensure the reservation
  • Length of time and date at the discretion of the facilitator
  • Attendees bring their own lunch
  • Perhaps a light tea with refreshments provided in the afternoon
  • Stipend for the facilatator

Ray Griffin was pleased to be asked as the facilitator; Ray, Debbie, and I met on May 20 to plan the event at 10 am before the heat of the day set in. From the front porch of the cottage, Debbie dusted the pollen off the comfortable rocking chairs. We rested a spell listening to the rushing waters of a nearby hidden creek, the calls of various birds, and soaking in the lush greenness of the nearby Blue Ridge Mountains.

“The (Shenandoah) Park is not far from here?” Ray asked.

“No it isn’t,” Debbie replied.

Here is the agenda for the Poetry Retreat

A Gathering of Poets

16 June 2022


9:30:                Arrival of Participants.

Enjoy walking around the grounds, exploring the buildings, or relaxing in a chair on the porch and enjoy the view of the mountains. The old church is also open for meet and greet.

9:30 – 10:        Meet and Greet in the Church.

Light refreshments will be provided before and during the retreat.

10:00               Welcome by Debbie Scott, our Host

10:05               Let’s Get Started by Ray Griffin, our Facilitator

  • Introductions.
    • Your Expectations from Today.
    • What is poetry, and what does it mean to you?

10:20               Group Poem Exercise.

10:40               Find Your Space and Thus Your Center

Please find a comfortable space, either alone or with another poet. Find your space and inspiration for a poem, or poems that you will write this morning.

12:00               Regroup and Sharing Poetry in the Church.

Please feel free to share your thoughts and poem(s) you wrote this morning, or just listen to what others might wish to share.

12:30               Lunch in the Dining Hall

Brief Wrap-up and Thank you for Participating.

Enjoy good conversation while dining.

23 thoughts on “Planning a Poetry Retreat”

  1. I love poetry and writing retreats! I love going to a cool location, meeting total strangers at the retreat (occasionally familiar face, but usually total strangers), getting a crazy prompt, writing something in an hour or two to then workshop in said group of mostly strangers, who by this point feel like family, and reading their pieces. Honestly, it’s become my favorite way to travel, because I love this activity and hate planning the details of travel. Good luck with your retreat!

    Liked by 2 people

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