ROCKLAND — On four consecutive Wednesdays, beginning Oct. 13, the Farnsworth Art Museum presents a poetry performance workshop entitled “Off the Page: A Workshop for Honing Skills for Poetry Performance.” Led by master poet Martin Steingesser, the workshop will take place on Zoom from 3:30 to 5 p.m. The sessions will take place Oct. 13, 20 and 27, and Nov. 3.

The workshop is geared toward showing participants how to achieve more range, more nuance and more meaning from in their spoken word poems. In this “Off the Page” workshop, students will work toward a sense of pure awareness and natural embodiment when speaking their own or others’ poetry, story, or dramatic work. Sessions will focus on exploring, discussing, and practicing skills in a traditional sense and in the spirit of learning by heart. Attention will be shifted from mental knowing to attentive devotion for the receptive gift of spontaneous speech, moving from head to heart. Emphasis may be on poetry or prose, according to participant preference.

Steingesser is author of three books of poems, “Yellow Horses,” “Brothers of Morning” and “The Thinking Heart: the Life & Loves of Etty Hillesum,” an earlier version of the performance one, “Etty’s Song,” based on Hillesum’s journal and letters. “Etty’s Song” has toured in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont; and in Europe, in Poland, and at the International Etty Hillesum Congress in Belgium. “A burning, tender voice,” said former Maine Poet Laureate Baron Wormser. He served as Portland, Maine’s inaugural Poet Laureate from 2007 to 2009. As a performance poet, he has given presentations for diverse audiences, from the Poetry and Jazz Festival in Portsmouth, N.H., to the State House at the Maine Capitol. He has been teaching poetry workshops in Maine and New England for 40 years and was given the Maine Alliance for Arts Education’s 2006 Bill Bonyun Award “for exemplified talent and professionalism as an artist and contributions to arts education” and awarded a University of Southern Maine Stonecoast Pierre Menard Poetry Scholarship in 2000. “Writing and presenting poems is a way I touch and make present a sense of grace I want in my life,” he says. “There are moments I love in poems I have made—when they are given, when windows, doors, walls blow off, and I am in a warm, boundless space with whoever is listening.”

The fee for this program is $108; $90 for Farnsworth members. For more information or to register for this program, visit