Poetry Project Presentation

Saturday, January 27, 2018 - By: Hannah R, Mackenzie ‘18

One recent rainy Saturday, students gathered in Mr. Collis’ classroom among Pittsburgh Steelers posters and steaming mugs of coffee to hear two spoken word poets from the Victoria Poetry Project.

Spoken word poetry is exactly what it sounds like: poetry that resembles everyday speech, though often with more artful description and figurative language than the average person uses. The form is becoming increasingly popular, and Victoria BC is a hub of writers, artists, and speakers who communicate their ideas through spoken word poetry.

Each poet delivered two pieces, all of which were insightful, expertly crafted, and passionately delivered. After we heard their work, we were asked to write two poems of our own.

The instructions for the first were simply to write. “If you don’t know what to write, start with ‘I don’t know what to write’”, was the advice we received. “If you get stuck, repeat the last line until the next one comes to you.”

Before writing the second poem, we were asked to brainstorm pairs of objects, people, animals – anything, really! – with which to craft a breakup letter. Suggestions included acidic letters from a dog to its leash, a teen to Instagram, and socks to stinky shoes.

With ideas shared, everyone picked their favourite pairing and had the opportunity to use cliché breakup lines and venomous dismissals without hurting anyone.

Finally, students had the opportunity to share some of what they wrote, if they wanted to.

Thank you to Mr. Collis and the guest poets for putting together this great workshop! 

Hannah R, Mackenzie ‘18 

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