Today, February 21st, 2020, I had my first meeting with my mentor, Aaron Hunter.
I learned that she got into slam poetry by going to youth slams every month. How she then made it onto a slam team that competed at a Voices Of Today festival. Then, when the youth slams stopped running, she started going to the ‘all ages’ slam, where she met and performed alongside a variety of talented artists. Finally, in her grade ten year, she taught students from Summit middle school to write and express themselves through poetry. She is currently an active poet who regularly competes and places at slams.
Furthermore, I learned that Aaron finds slam competitions to provide an atmosphere of comfort, a place where you don’t have to think about anything else. This of course has only heightened my excitement for my first slam performance.
And, despite the fact that this was only the first meeting, I’ve managed to gather multiple pieces of wisdom:
- Honesty is an important part of writing poetry
- Not trying to be like any other writer, other than yourself is key
- Slam is about finding your own voice
And finally, concerning the skill side of my first meeting, I further explored the usage of poetic devices, specifically alliteration, practiced writing from random prompts, as well as writing using a collaborative approach.
The most important thing however that I accomplished today was finding the courage to read one of my poems to my mentor. And, after I did so, I realized that there really wasn’t anything to be afraid of.