That’s why she took her class to a coffee shop, and allowed students to express their style and prose one recent morning.
“Going to a coffee shop and reading poetry is more of a college-exposed environment,” Veal said. “A lot of them don’t feel comfortable speaking so this will get them out of their comfort zone.”
On Thursday morning, Dec. 2, Veal’s ninth grade honors English class walked to Thurston’s Cafe in downtown Calhoun, and spent the period at the restaurant listening to their peers read a variety of poems, including Haikus and free verse forms.
“Poetry is really abstract, so students have a difficult time relating to it,” Veal said. “I’ve prepared music in class and had a lot of classical poetry to help correlate it to a poem.”
Parents and community members, who may have missed the reading, will have the opportunity to read the class’s poetry by visiting Thurston’s.
The poems and artwork will be displayed on the walls of the eatery for the remainder of the month.
Next school year, Veal said she plans on taking her class to the senior center to read poems to local senior residents.
Turning poetry into a rap song
Zach Ivey read his poem “I’m a Yellow Jacket” with structure and flow at the poetry reading, but he said he planned to lay down a beat and turn into a rap song in honor of Calhoun’s football season.
“I usually write a lot, so I can take pieces from it and tweak it until I’m satisfied,” Ivey said.
The poem/rap song was dedicated to the Yellow Jackets football players and coaches as they faced the No.1 ranked team, George Washington Carver-Columbus lat Friday night in Calhoun.
“Anything is possible if you have man number 12,” Ivey said, is his favorite line in the poem.
Ivey explained that man number 12 refers to the crowd, which he said is one of main symbols in his poem.
Chloe West found inspiration in nature, and the imagery in her poem focused on grains of sand sieved through an hourglass.
An ever-stretching expanse of purity
Nature’s sugar so refined and sweet
Trapped in an hourglass so confined
A grain of sand lost in time
West said the field trip was a fun way to learn and feel comfortable reading in front of others.
“I like poetry because you can express yourself and show people how you feel. When you read, you become comfortable in front of others and it becomes easier,” West said.