Experimenting with poetry

Sunday night at The Spice Factory was proof that millennials can be both self- and community-aware. A group of young adults performed their poems at the Hamilton Young Poetsʼ (HYP) monthly poetry slam on Nov. 26.

The poets were given the opportunity to experiment with the topic ofscience. Subjects ranged from Earth and pollution to gender and race.

HYP’s resident mentor and consultant, and the night’s feature poet, Ian Keteku said it was fun bringing together two worlds that didn’t usually have a conversation.

In addition to bringing worlds together, Keteku said one of the goals of HYP is to re-introduce poetry to the world.

“The idea is to put poetry into the community and show people that their voices matter,” he said.

“I like the idea of combining science and poetry,” said Aseja Dava, a HYP teaching artist and one of the night’s contestants. “Showing that it’s intersectional. There was feminism in that (Dava’s poem). Science as well. I just want to show that it’s possible to mesh those two worlds together.”

In addition to bringing worlds together, Keteku said one of the goals of HYP is to re-introduce poetry to the world.

“The idea is to put poetry into the community and show people that their voices matter,” he said.

Exploring and pushing social boundaries seemed to be the theme for the night. The poets brought their interpretations of science inspired by their life experiences to their poems. And they took to the stage with the same gusto with which they had listened to and cheered for their fellow poets.

The camaraderie was one of the highlights for some guests like Daya Williams.

“We’re a room full of strangers for the most part,” said Williams.  “People just come and they share their stories with complete strangers, which I admire. It’s a very supportive night. My favourite night of the month.”

Hira Nadeem said there is no such thing as a stranger for the Hamilton Youth Poets.

“It’s a very friendly environment,” Nadeem said. “If you’re here you’re a part of it.”

HYP will be hosting the next poetry slam on Dec. 10 at The Spice Factory and it will be Christmas-themed.

About the author  ⁄ Cynthia Boyede

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