STREAMING THROUGH LYRICISM
A creative confluence of river-writing, poetry, ecology, and history – a unique journey through Navajo country and an iconic desert landscape
hosted by Byron Aspaas, celebrated Diné teacher, writer, storyteller
14-19 AUGUST, 2023 | UPPER SAN JUAN RIVER, UTAH
Streaming Through Lyricism
STREAMING THROUGH LYRICISM HAS BEEN POSTPONED UNTIL 2024.
Byron F. Aspaas was raised within the four sacred mountains of Dinétah. In a 2017 essay, “Nádleehí: One Who Changes,” Aspaas explains how these elements are interconnected and under continuing threat. Aspaas’s first published work was included in Yellow Medicine Review and since then his writing has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. Aspaas’s writing revisits the destruction of sacred land and engages his readers in a dialogue about preserving Diné culture and land. He uses imagery and persona to present explorations of language, landscape, and identity.
STREAMING THROUGH LYRICISM
This unique field course is a creative confluence of river-writing, poetry, ecology, and history - a journey through Navajo country and an iconic desert landscape - led by Byron Aspaas, Diné poet, storyteller, and teacher. We’ll explore themes around ecopoetics, poetry, re/imagining narrative through contemporary voice and lens, and asking questions for the future.
Streaming Through Lyricism will include interactive analysis of poetry and literature; discussion and development of tools for the craft of writing; and production of written creative work in the field. The course will examine the natural and human history of the San Juan River corridor and cultivate connection to place through immersive experience. Byron will lead the cohort in innovative, place-based practices like listening to and referencing the body as landscape and as language.
IS THIS COURSE A GOOD FIT FOR YOU?
- Writers, poets, journalists, policy makers, leaders, educators, and curious people of all genres and skill levels are welcome.
- This field course is offered for undergrad or graduate credit through Fort Lewis College and is open to non-students and students alike.
In this workshop, you will:
- learn to listen for environmental voices that exist within the landscape, night skies, and dreamlands of the mind.
- consider the story of landscape.
- discuss reciprocity and the importance of giving back to the sentient.
- practice ideologies of balance: Hózhó.
- explore Indigenous perspectives on the story of land and water.
- dive into the deep history of the San Juan River corridor.
- consider stories told in rocks, and identify elements of storytelling in the landscape itself.
- discuss the theory and and practice of ecopoetics, considering contemporary Indigenous literature.
- craft you own unique creative work in the field through a deep witnessing of place and sensory immersion.
THIS COURSE BEGINS AND ENDS AT FORT LEWIS COLLEGE IN DURANGO, COLORADO.
Streaming Through Lyricism is eligible for scholarships through The Freeflow Foundation.
Because we believe teachers and students need regenerative outdoor experiences more than most, Freeflow always extends a small discount to contracted educators and enrolled students. We also offer a small discount to our alumni. Because we believe in paying our instructors, facilitators, support staff, and guides an equitable wage, we do not offer individual discounts that compromise the integrity of those wages. If you need financial support, please consider applying for our scholarships.
Your program cost of $2850 includes:
- daily discussions, workshops, and generative sessions with Byron Aspaas + Freeflow faculty
- pre-course logistical support + substantive reading / media list
- professional river guides, boats, paddling gear, waterproof bags, and safety gear
- delicious, healthful meals and snacks, plus wine and coffee, from breakfast on August 14 through breakfast on August 19
- all permitting, parking, and access fees
- a MiiR Freeflow coffee mug, to use and take home with you
The course also serves as an introduction to the Freeflow galaxy of writers, leaders, and thinkers. Our alumni also receive discounts on future Freeflow courses. If you’d like to take Streaming Through Lyricism for Fort Lewis College credit, please let us know.
Guide gratuities are not included in the program cost. We strongly suggest giving your river guides some love, and we are happy to discuss norms for tipping – just ask.
Participants must bring their own camping gear (tent + sleeping bag + sleeping pad). If you don't have access to these things and cannot borrow them, let us know and we will help you.
Space on this adventure is limited to 12 participants. We will close registration once the roster is full. Please apply early.
All deposits and payments are non-refundable. Payment plans are available. Payments can be made by mailing in an old-fashioned check, or by credit card or bank transfer via the payment link you'll receive once your application is approved.
Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis.
CLAIM YOUR SPACE
Make space for your creative work, movement, and new ideas this autumn. Send us your questions and we’ll get in touch right away. If you know you’re ready to apply, click the APPLY NOW button.