Gray Jacobik

Things Wired Together Fire Together

The phrase “things wired together fire together” is referred to as the first law of neuroscience: it explains the creation and reinforcement of the brain’s neuro-pathways. I’m using it to describe the creation of new connections within a poem.  We’re all pretty good writers of the literal (after all we’ve had years and years of being rewarded for doing so), but moving our literal language to the figural (imaginative) level can sometimes require finesse, otherwise we sound artificial and not artful.  The opportunities for wiring together things that fire together are not always on the surface of an existing text (our poem in draft):  This workshop is about asking the right (in context-only) questions of your poem so you can see precisely where to open-up or precisely where to cut.  So bring your diving bell, your hard hat, your tough-as-nails skin, and your kick-ass attitude -- and don’t forget your poem-in-progress (enough copies for all).

Biographical Note: Gray Jacobik’s poems have appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies including Best American Poetry, American Poetry Now, The Autumn House Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, Poets Guide to the Birds and Garnet Poems: 300 Years of Poetry in Connecticut.   Among other honors, she has received The Yeats Prize, The Emily Dickinson Prize, an NEA Fellowship, and served as the Frost Place Poet-in-Residence. Her book, The Double Task, received The Juniper Prize; The Surface of Last Scattering was selected by X. J. Kennedy as the winner of the X. J. Kennedy Poetry Prize, and Brave Disguises received the AWP Poetry Series Award.  Her most recent book, Little Boy Blue: A Memoir in Verse, is published by CavanKerry Press. Gray invites anyone interested in learning more about her work as a poet to visit her website:  And, if you are interested in her work as a painter, visit her other website:


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