The oldest extant work of literature (in cuneiform) are by the Sumerian poet Enheduanna who lived and died four millennia ago. In the many thousands of years since it's been around, poetry has gone through staggering changes, yet always spiraling back to the source: breath, voice, body, and the sacred. Students dip their toes in this vast river of human endeavor and explore traditional, modernist, and contemporary modes of poetry. Throughout the course, they draft, revise, and polish their own poems, giving each other feedback throughout the process. They submit monthly analytical and reflective journals in response to the classic and contemporary poetry they read in class and at home. At the end of each semester, they turn in a portfolio of several revised poems.