Poetry in motion, poetry in Olshan

Darius McCullough and Peter Arvanitis

Manuscript and the Poetry Out Loud clubs (POL) collaborated to host the third annual Poetry Cafe yesterday I period, which gave students and faculty a chance to share their favorite poetry and music with an audience.

The event was run and organized by the president of POL Claire Yoo (12), Events Editor of Manuscript Gavin Delanty (12), and Director of Student Activities Caroline Bartels.

During their sophomore year, Yoo and Delanty saw an opportunity to create an event in which students could showcase their work, and they have continued to host the cafe  since with the goal of having the whole community share poetry they are proud of.

“I’m most excited to see all of the people that show up,” Delanty said. “There’s always a broad range of people with different backgrounds and experiences with poetry, and it’s fun to hear from them,” he said.

“I felt like there was a lack of that opportunity at school, so I wanted to create a space for students to be able to [perform] openly,” Yoo said.

“I love poetry, but my passion extends to all forms of writing,” Delanty said. “I first found my love for poetry at one of Manuscript’s events two years ago,” he said.

When the duo first hosted the Poetry Cafe, they did not expect it to expand the way it did, Yoo said.

“Originally it was supposed to be a small event, but I am really happy that it has continued for three years,” Yoo said.

“There are lots of people out there writing poetry, and we don’t necessarily know about it, and then you have an event like this and they come out of the woodwork and are reading their own stuff,” Bartels said.

Students were especially excited to showcase their talent and work and perform at the event.

“[Performing is a] great way into expression, thought, feeling, and is a great way of just telling a story,” Kyle Gaillard (12), who performed said.

The opportunity to see others perform was especially important to many who attended the event.

English teacher Dr. Adam Casdin felt it is important for students to find other ways to express themselves outside of the classroom, and he was excited to see what students could come up with, he said.

“The cafe can help people relate to each other in a different way than just speaking,” Ava Merker (11) said. “It is a good way to help other people get to know each other in ways we otherwise wouldn’t,” she said.

“Poetry is a living, breathing art form and I’m most excited when you see it live,” Casdin said. I am a literary guy so I like to read poetry and think about it, but there’s nothing like the in-the-moment experience where the words, the expression, the conception, is all active at the same time,” he said.

Yoo is an avid fan of writing, but also sees the significance of giving a voice to literary work, she said.

“I just love seeing people share their work and be happy with their work and seeing that there is a community that will respond to it positively, listen, and enjoy it,” Yoo said.