"Reading a poem out loud makes it more about the poet, your own feelings. It adds more meaning."
That is how freshman Khushbu Dulani expressed her feelings about reading poetry aloud. Members of the Eastchester High School SLAM! Poetry Club and Advisor Dr. Ruth Kambar recently presented their original work and poems from professional poets at an Open Mic Night.
Approximately 30 guests attended the event last month at Barnes & Noble in the Vernon Hills Shopping Center in Eastchester. Students were also encouraged by their World Language teacher, Laura Marcoccia, to read poems in Farsi, French, Italian, and Spanish. Andrea Smith-Yahia chaperoned the event with Ms. Marcoccia.
Sophomore Carson Moncini has been writing poems for years and she said sometimes it is easier to express her feelings in this way. "I write about every day high school experiences as well as topics like equality in the LGBTQ community, and depression," she said. "It is hard sometimes to get words out there. I write them down and it is a way to share what I cannot always say."
"I write about what is important in life," said Chukwuma "Tomi" Eke, who emigrated from Nigeria. "There is a spiritual component to my poetry. I write about real-world issues and what affects society and human beings."
Friends encouraged sophomore Taylor Chaney to join the club. "We have a lot of hard working people pouring out their hearts and souls into their work. It is important for others to experience this art form," he said.
Students in the Poetry Slam Club also submit their work to the high school literary magazine Forum. They plan to attend future Open Mic nights during the school year.