The SD42 Poetry SLAM was held at Maple Ridge secondary. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

SD42 SLAM awards aspiring poets

Awards given for best delivery, most emotional and best overall

A celebration of language took place at Maple Ridge secondary during the recent SLAM competition.

Students from across the district delivered funny, emotional and sometimes intense poems, laying bare their inner thoughts for all to hear.

Winners of this year’s SLAM: Myah Steeves from Pitt Meadows secondary, for Most Humourous poem; Natalie Nakamura from Thomas Haney secondary, for Most Blood on the Page, or most emotional poem; Taleah Threatful from Maple Ridge secondary, for Top Wordsmith or the poem with the best descriptive language; Miranda Kahlert from Thomas Haney secondary, for best Dynamic Delivery.

The Poetry Hero, or best overall poem went to Mario Cruz, from Maple Ridge secondary, who wrote about his experiences of being an immigrant child in Canada in a poem titled I Remember My Childhood.

“As a kid growing up, it was very difficult. I got bullied lots for having a darker skin tone, speaking with an accent, laughing louder. Just bringing my culture here and people rejecting it,” said Cruz, who moved to Canada from El Salvador when he was seven years old.

He said the main point of his poem was to create awareness around the difficulties immigrant children face when they move to a new country.

“A lot of people think racism is dead at school, racism doesn’t happen in school, but there are little kids like me, back then and today, and they are growing up, just as I am, being bullied,” he said.

Kahlert, in Grade 9, wrote her poem titled Kids These Days for an English 9 assignment.

She doesn’t like the expression and wrote about how the world is messed up because of the older generations who blame youth.

“But we just came into this world,” she said.

“The older generations have completely messed up the world and now we’re trying to fix it.”

Nakamura, in Grade 10, wrote about a girl that she likes called Ask.

“How, even though I have all these emotions and even if she asked for anything I would get it for her, I don’t need to ask for anything because she is my everything,” she said.

Threatful, in Grade 9, wrote her poem, Up To You, in Grade 6 and made changes to it to make it more mature. It had three parts to it: one about a girl desiring love because she is missing her father from her life; the next about a boy who takes out his pain from his family-life by bullying others at school; and finally about social media and how people just want attention.

The SLAM is an event that seeks to provide an opportunity for our fabulous students to showcase their verbal gymnastics, their brilliant beat, their imagery-laden poetry, and their hearts and minds through spoken word,” explained Sid Siddique, who teaches writing at Maple Ridge secondary.

Judges this year: English teachers Kelli Bahia and Kim Clarke; school trustee Kim Dumore; UFV student teacher Jennifer Gertz; music teacher Mel Scarcella; and Grade 12 student Naomi Gatehouse.

Each high school in the district has its own in-house event and send their top six students to compete in the district SLAM, said Siddique, adding that the MRSS SLAM is named after the school mascot, the RAM SLAM.

He said that SLAMS are an oral tradition that have been given a new life with ordinary people finding an outlet for story-telling.

Siddique added they also seek to promote, celebrate, and engage students in the art of poetry with a captive audience.

“I think that’s what we saw, heard, and felt today at the event.”


 

cflanagan@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Winners of the SD42 Poetry SLAM that was held at Maple Ridge secondary. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

Just Posted

IN IT TOGETHER: Important to move your butt

Maple Ridge mom offers series of wellness columns aimed at helping navigate through COVID-19

LOOKING BACK: Quarantine back in the day of the Spanish flu kept Maple Ridge safe

When the 1918 epidemic hit Haney, washing hands, respecting isolation rules, and disinfecting helped

Council conduct bylaw under scrutiny in Maple Ridge

Bylaw being questioned at Committee of the Whole Tuesday afternoon

Pitt Meadows to host live virtual city council meeting Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Mayor Dingwall updates on new initiatives and city staffing

Haney Bypass section closed for Easter long weekend

Bypass improvements expected to be completed later this year

COVID-19: 4 new deaths, 25 new cases but only in Vancouver Coastal, Fraser Health

A total of 1,291 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

B.C. secures motel, hotel rooms for COVID-19 shelter space

Community centres, rooms reserved for pandemic self-isolation

Sanders drops 2020 bid, leaving Biden as likely nominee

Sanders plans to talk to his supporters later Wednesday

B.C. faith leaders, Horgan discuss need for virtual religious ceremonies

Leaders were open to providing other ways to celebrate during the pandemic

Emergency COVID-19 funding now available for children with special needs

Funding to be used to help support families through uncertain times of pandemic

Revenue dip needed to qualify for wage subsidy drops to 15% in March: Trudeau

Wage subsidy would over 75% of each employee’s salary for qualifying businesses

B.C. closes all provincial parks for COVID-19 protection

Easter weekend approaches, camping already closed

Air Canada says it will apply for wage subsidy to rehire workers after cutting 16,500 jobs

Air Canada said March revenues fell by more than 30 per cent year over year

Canadians urged to include pets in their COVID-19 emergency plans

That includes plans about who will care for them if the owner is hospitalized

Most Read