Term 1, Issue 3: English Department | Siena College
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Year 7 Poetry Incursion

On Friday, 25 February, the Year 7s had an amazing poetry incursion with Slam Poet, Joel McKerrow. Joel shared some of his poetry works with the year level and workshopped some strategies on how to effectively write poetry.

The Year 7s were enthralled and well entertained by the experience, and they left feeling inspired.

A group of twenty-five girls also decided to take up the English Enrichment opportunity, which is an intensive workshop with Joel. We encourage as many students as possible to engage in these enrichment opportunities as they arise.

Below is Emily Sleeman’s poem which she wrote during the workshop:

"My inspiration for this piece was a ruler and how perfect and straight its lines are. This can be related to social expectations of people and for some, this can be incredibly hard to deal with. I also thought about how everyone presumes that a ruler’s length is thirty centimetres, but if you include the space (without the metric markings) on either side of the ruler, its actual length is thirty-one centimetres. This can relate to many of us whom have a 'hidden side' to ourselves. This poem is basically about breaking free of society’s expectations and being who you really are, your true self."

A Ruler

A line.
A time.
A date.
A way to do this, a way to do that.
Away. Away I shy. Away, away and away I go.

Arrows surround me, pointing.
As straight as a ruler they point.
They point a way. The way they want me to go.
I go away.
Away from it. I can’t look back, I pursue truth.
I want it, I’m hungry.

The lines, neat and perfectly ruled.
Away I go.
I pass rulers lying on the ground.
The centimetres climb up to thirty centimetres.
I want to scream, I want to be heard.
“It’s thirty-one centimetres long,” I scream.
No one hears.
I run, run from it.
Away from the lines and the fake rulers.

They are lies. They loom over me.
I push. I shove. Up and up.
For the truth I long for is waiting for me.

I am so hungry.
Up. Up. I hurt. Up. Up.
Flying like an eagle.
Others shy away, thinking I will shoot them down.
I won’t.
I fly. I fly. Up. Up. Up.

I break through the clouds.
They push against me, but I pursue it.
The thing. The truth.
The life I want.
I fly.
Up, Up, up and up.

Punita Mistry

Head of English
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