Something that inspired me to start writing poetry was the Grade 5 exhibition. My mother, an author at the time (2013) had recently published her book ‘A Gentleman’s Word’. Our family had always enjoyed reading and writing and basically studying literature not as a subject but more as a passionate hobby. As a child, I was constantly introduced to different genres of books and naturally, I tended to enjoy them. The idea of poetry was introduced during the last unit in English class which coincidently happened to be at the same time as the exhibition. My friends (Hazel and Alex) and I were thinking of innovative ways to represent the issue of contaminated water as well as the social consequences. Hence, the idea of writing a poem from the viewpoint of a child suffering from the outcomes of the Haiti earthquake.
Personally, I think that poetry is a type of literature which tends to agitate and awaken the creator’s and the reader’s emotions as well as imagination.
Frankly, I feel that it helps to open my feelings and find what I am trying to maybe unconsciously hide, like my insecurities or terrible past experiences. A reason as to why I continue to write poetry is because it helps me to express and reflect the conflicts that happen within family and friends. A specific event that triggered my interest in writing poetry was when my mesho (uncle) had passed away in 2010. At the time, I was seven years old and I remember sitting on the couch, facing the corpse and looking at everyone wailing and not feeling anything at all, though as I distinctly remember, he was very close to me. I was never able to comprehend what had happened at the moment and all I can remember now is the sound of obnoxious sobbing and screaming. Yet, when we started the poetry unit, all the suppressed emotions of grief and shock seemed to have surrendered their defenses and had scattered themselves over the paper.
Note: My poetry from this period is up on my portfolio blog under Primary Poetry.