Clearing the Spring, Tending the Fountain: The Common Gathering

Over the past several weeks, we’ve been sharing the Core Principles of our Clearing the Spring, Tending the Fountain poetry exploration series for teachers.  April 30th was the culminating event for these sessions—The Common Gathering.  Over 100 teachers and poets from all over New Jersey came together at Princeton Day School for a day of conversation, reading, writing and listening.  The Common Gathering is a day unlike any other professional development for teachers.  While located in a school, the day is far from academic—it’s rather a day to connect with others and with the deepest parts of ourselves through poetry.  For this Poetry Friday, we thought we’d share some highlights from the day:

A packet of diverse and lively poems was prepared as a resource for the day's activities. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

Featured poet Marie Ponsot gave two readings—one of her own work, which spans over 60 years of writing, and another reading of poems she loves. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

In smaller discussions, participants shared what moved them about poems from the packet or other poems they brought. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

There was an open reading for teachers to share their work. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

Some workshops incorporated sensory experiences and yoga as away to access the imagination. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

Marie Ponsot’s and Dodge Poets’ books were sold at a discount so that teachers could refresh their collections. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

Marie Ponsot signed books for her eager fans. (Lauren Rutten Photography)

For a full write—up of the day, go to The Princeton Packet.


In addition to hosting Clearing the Spring, Tending the Fountain, The Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Program co-sponsors school festivals in New Jersey high schools.  For more information, contact Michele Russo, Poetry Coordinator.

View video clips of poetry readings from past biennial festivals.

Become a Friend with a donation to the Dodge Poetry Program.

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3 Responses to Clearing the Spring, Tending the Fountain: The Common Gathering

  1. […] the Common Gathering in April (the final event in Clearing the Spring, Tending the Fountain) , I was inspired by the […]

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