A Poetry Love Story, Clichés and All

Every person has a creative side, and it can be expressed in many ways: problem-solving, original and innovative thinking, and artistically, to name a few. Describe how you express your creative side.


My life in poetry didn't begin with the slam sessions or political activism I know today. Instead, in first grade, I wrote a haiku about my bunny, Brownie. I can’t remember the gory details, but I know it contained the adjective ‘fluffy’ at least twice. I suffered a great deal trying to capture Brownie’s spirit in three short lines.

Thus began my relationship with poetry. I hated confining myself to seventeen syllables. This caused a natural aversion to poetry throughout my elementary and middle school years. I naively stereotyped all poetry as pointless and unnecessary.

But beginning high school, I learned it can take multiple reads and multiple heads put together to translate what the poet is trying to say, but it only makes the process that much more satisfying. Writing about moving to Montana, I discovered the freedom in this careful form of self-expression. I moved the feelings of isolation and longing from my head to paper. Poetry was my coping mechanism.

I began to understand poetry’s place in this busy world.

Last year, I attended a poetry slam. At this slam, three of my friends expressed their opinion on an election they couldn’t vote in. A Native American man’s poem consisted solely of the Navajo word for water, “tó,”...

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