Author: Dreaming Heavens PM
A letter to the poet who changed this girl's life forever.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Spiritual - Words: 1,193 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 1 - Published: 02-01-08 - Status: Complete - id: 2470489
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
I'm not a poet. I'd idealistically like to consider myself one in my own Dream world, in my own imaginations. Reality however is another universe of its own. I'm just an aficionado of the written word, who is always wishing and praying and hoping that one day reality will fade away and Dreamland becomes truth...
I have a quiet confidence. I know that. I'm not bragging nor pleading for help when I say this; it's just who I am. So I talk when I feel like it and yell in my head till the only person who can hear what the hell I'm yelling is me, and prefer to observe a person's mannerisms and language while quietly making small chat as ploys to know them; just as long as they don't know me.
I love to write. Not stories or novels, I always feel too scared to fail in the end; too convinced that I don't have what it will take even though I've been brought up by books since the tender age of two or three. My love for the art of words seems to blind me in scaring myself for a failure.
I have an amazing English teacher. Mr. Hudelson, isn't that such a teacher name, much the less an English teacher? I never want to fail in his class, always pushing myself harder through writer's blocks and vulturesque-peer orientated stares. (Did I just make up a word? Probably.) You can easily tell that poetry is his favorite lesson plan just by the way he gets worked up about it. He first showed me slam.
So imagine my surprise when I, for the first time in my life, hear slam poetry. See I thought poetry was limited to being on a page of paper, but never slammed. Recited was the proper term, I thought, that poetry became into when spoken out loud. My first slam poem: "Ohm" by Saul Williams. I have now youtubed every slam, googled every stanza, and gotten know poets as I know myself.
I never truly talked in that class. I'm an individual: not by the way that I dress, or talk, but just because I do things independently. There are so many cliques in my class, and there I am sitting in an island of empty desks. I tell myself that I don't care, and for the most part I don't. But in a classroom that's filled with incessant chatter, sometimes the chatter can hit you smack across the face like a slap. No one in my class ever truly heard me talk, till I performed a slam.
(I honestly don't know why I'm telling you all this, but I hope that my fingers can make sense of this in the end.)
My teacher knew of my voice. He'd read it so many times before. I know I have a voice; I just tend not to let many see it. I'd read many poems before, but there is a huge difference when listening to poetry. Our homework that night was to write our own poem, which I did after a grueling six hour writing frenzy. The next time in his class he asked students to read theirs.
There was the charismatic jock that thought his was the best; then the girl who only saw words, not meaning; the poet who I dearly respect that created rhymes out of words not known in common day language. Of course the class enthusiastically clapped for the amazing ones, and almost grudgingly clapped for the boring-not really good but I don't want to say anything so my actions will say everything for me-clap.
And then he called on me. The class thinks I'm quiet, which I am but only to them. My stomach was shaking so bad that my hand shook along with it. Three pages was my poem, and I put everything I had into it. I put myself into it. How could I let judgments of something which was so uniquely me frighten me, when I am the one in control? Words ran through my lips sinking in sedations on my tongue. I lost myself in a poem that day. The poem was me, and it was my voice speaking. I was speaking.
When I looked up, they did nothing. I waited for what still feels like eternity for me for my classmates to react. But they all just sat there staring at me. I didn't care anymore about the criticism, but for the love of God say something, do something! In which case they finally did, only after Mr. Hudelson came up to me and bowed. I told you he was an amazing teacher.
My poems are always different to them. I'm variety in the form of a girl finding herself, and they just don't know how to understand and predict that.
Seems like everyday after school now, all I do is see more slam videos on youtube. The more I see and hear and taste: the more I find myself. It was on one of those lucky days that I found you slamming to your heart's content. I spent the rest of the night listening to poem after poem over and over and over again...till I had first and last stanzas down.
You put yourself into your poems and your slams. It is you who is the putting everything on the line with that one poem, as if they would be your last words. You have now been given the title of Most True, for you were always true to yourself; you don't see that yet. If you cannot see it in yourself, then please, see the change in me. You have changed me without even knowing me and wholly valuing me.
In my Dreamland, my first real slam in front of an audience has always been slamming like you. Knowing that when speech fails, pen and paper—words never do. They will always—for infinite as reliable as the sun and moon, and most importantly, truth.
I'm sorry if this has been a waste of your time. I really am sorry. I was hoping that one day I could meet you, or just see you. If not, then no need to worry about it. No need to feel guilty about it. Life is about risks and journeys one can or must take. That is what life is teaching me and that is what I am learning. So if it comes to never seeing you, I'll make this decision to thank you. Isn't that what you are suppose to do in life, make decisions? It's been a pleasure writing to you, although I don't expect a reply back. But hey, poets are completely unpredictable, or so I've heard. It's been an honor, a pleasure, and a revelation. Words never die, immortalized: I'll leave you with that.
The Voice of Pen and Paper