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Poetry, out loud.

Posted by on Tuesday, January 25, 2011 in Academics, Art, College Life, Freshman Life, General Information, Student Life.

Last Thursday, I was able to attend Jericho Brown’s reading at the Black Cultural Center here on Vanderbilt campus. The Vanderbilt Creative Writing program hosts Gertrude & Harold Vanderbilt Visiting Writers Series where different poetry and fiction authors come read and do a Q&A for those who attend the reading. The awesome thing about these readings is that they’re completely free and open to Vanderbilt students, and any one is welcome to ask questions.

I was able to attend most of the poetry readings first semester (and also required by two of my English classes—but it definitely never felt like homework) and it’s so cool to see poetry being read because it adds a whole other dimension to what are normally just words on a page. I had read some of Brown’s poetry in class last semester so being able to hear poems I had studied being read aloud by the award-winning poet who wrote them was fantastic. Poetry becomes more accessible and tangible when the poet is right in front of you, and even friends with your teacher (or, in the case of one of last semester’s readings, is your teacher).

As someone who is probably on track to be a Creative Writing major, I am probably a bit biased when I say poetry readings are a really cool experience. But I definitely recommend all Vanderbilt students check one out—each one I’ve been to has been unique and has illuminated a new aspect of poetry for me.

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