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Leaning Toward Light: Writing Poems with Plants 

(Tilden Botanical Garden) CLOSED

Date: Saturday, April 13
Time: 1-4pm 
Instructor: Tess Taylor
Ages: Adult 
Genre: Poetry
Price: $135
Tess Taylor.jpeg

Hello spring! To observe Earth Day early and celebrate Poetry Month, join noted poet Tess Taylor to write in Tilden’s Botanic Garden, and spend an afternoon building poems of observation, curiosity, and delight.


In this poem-focused workshop, in the company of manzanita, madrone, willow, sage, and aspen we’ll write to the flora and fauna around us. We’ll read poems and botanical writing, discussing their delights, before crafting offerings of our own. In the process, we’ll ground ourselves in time, history, weather and soil — and also in our own stories of our time on earth.


Come ready to celebrate season, soil, and the joys of writing in plein air. Those that register will also be gifted the anthology Leaning Toward Light: Poems for Gardens and the Hands That Tend Them, full of poems about gardening by some of todays luminary poets. The Washington Post calls the book “lush" and "a delight" and the Boston Globe calls it hopeful. In the words of Ross Gay, let’s write  “belovingly... "with collaborators human, critterly, fungal, floral, meteorological, cosmic, unborn, living, living now as soil.” Come join for a feast of the senses. 

About the Instructor:

Tess Taylor’s body of work deals with place, ecology, memory and cultural reckoning. She has published five celebrated poetry collections: The Misremembered World, The Forage House, Last West: Roadsongs for Dorothea Lange, Work & Days, and Rift Zone. Her work as a cultural critic appears in in Harpers Magazine, The Atlantic, The Kenyon Review, Poetry, Tin House, The Times Literary Supplement, CNN, and The New York Times. In 2023, she released Intimate Addresses, a podcast about artists, with the Getty and published her first full length poetry anthology: Leaning Toward Light: Poems for Gardens and the Hands that Tend Them, a collection of contemporary gardening poems, for an era of climate crisis. She gardens and raises chickens in El Cerrito, California.

Click here to learn more about Tess.


If you find that you can't take a class for which you registered, you may request a refund, less a $25 administrative fee, at least 48 hours prior to the start of the first class session. If a class doesn't reach its minimum enrollment, it will be cancelled, and all students will receive full refunds.

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