It’s a dark and cold Friday morning in December as senior Emily Beatty hits the snooze button on her alarm clock for the last time; she can’t be late for school on this day.
She swings by “Dunks” to grab her medium iced Caramel swirl (just milk of course) and bursts into the door at 7:25am. 5 minutes until one of the bests clubs you’ve never heard of begins: Poetry Club.
The club was founded by current seniors Emily Beatty, Lauren DiTullio, and Amanda Doria at the beginning of the year under the supervision of English and American Identities teacher Tara Iacobucci. “Poetry club is a group of people who all really love to write or listen to poetry” said Beatty, before adding “But we are a very inclusive group, we have freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors!”
Throughout their eleven and some odd years of school almost all students have been taught the same things when it comes to poetry:
“You’ve got to know what it is saying!”
“You’ve got to understand the message!”
“You have to read closely!”
While some of these are most definitely true, the club tries to break down these preconceptions of poetry if not by the strong aroma of a bubbling pot of hot coffee, then by the poems written and spoken by the students themselves.
“I see a lot of friendship and inclusivity when it comes to poetry, we all are supportive of each other and after each poem is read we always clap because everyone writes a beautiful piece!” said senior (and editor of the school’s literary magazine PRISM) Amanda Romano on what she saw as the value of poetry while DiTullio said “I think poetry is really important in expressing yourself” then adding “If you’re having a bad day poetry can really change your mood”
Each meeting is nearly identical in its open forum layout on Friday mornings where anyone who wants to share a poem is given the opportunity to do so. “We meet after school on Thursdays to write poems as a club but it’s not just us who shares[on Fridays]; anyone in the school can as well” said Romano.
Once the first person walks up to the front of the room and lets that first word, line, and stanza go, an avalanche of poems ensue with topics including (but not limited to) love, politics, anxiety, and personal experiences. “It’s one of those things where you just feel better when you’re there” remarked Romano and Beatty echoed the sentiment saying “The group that is there on Friday mornings is easily my favorite thing about the club”
Poetry Club doesn’t have 3 hour long meetings or mandatory events. It is simply an opportunity for students to take 20 minutes out of their busy lives to sip a coffee on a Friday morning and be moved by the words of their poetic peers. So as the bell rings to signify 10 minutes before the start of first period, the magic of poetry becomes just another memory. But those who know the club best don’t hang their heads or sulk.
Their alarms are already set for next week.