SAB, poet spread creativity at poetry workshop

Taylon Baker

Student Activities Board hosted its first ever slam poetry workshop Thursday night.

SAB has held poetry events before, but the workshop in Holmes Hall was the first of its kind.

Graham Hackett, a professional poet from Philadelphia, was at the event. He has performed on stages as big as the one at Bonnaroo.

He demonstrated various forms of slam poetry he had written and the techniques he used. His poetry dealt with love, fear, social justice and his own life. He worked with students to focus on timbre, tone, speed and more in their own poetry.

“Oral poetry has the power to address issues no other media outlet will cover,” Hackett said. “This is your voice.”

After his lessons, he gave students the opportunity to take over the mic. One after another, students supported each other as they read their own poetry. Hackett offered feedback and encouragement.

“I want this event to bring out the medium that goes overlooked sometimes and that students leave with insight they won’t be able to get from anywhere else from a professional,” Clayton Knight, SAB Director of Concerts, said.

UK student Blake Johnson read his own poem at the event.

“When I was younger, I was so involved in poetry and I just sort of fell out. When I saw this event though, I was like ‘Oh my god, I’ve got to go!’” Johnson said. “I hope I can use this to get back and stretch out my old creative muscles.”

UK student Tori Ferguson said this event really interested her.

“There are not enough events like this on campus,” Ferguson said. “I really hope to meet more people just like me who are just as passionate about this oral art as I am.”

SAB does not currently have any more poetry events on the schedule, but some could be added throughout the year.