Friday, July 27, 2007

Kids

In writing workshops with high school kids this week.

Says one, during a critique, "Maybe it's because of my OCD, but this bothers me...."

"It could be because of my ADHD, but I think this should be....," says another.

They're from Laurel, Collinwood High, St. Ed's, Cleveland School of the Arts. They're startlingly fresh, as are their images: "Purple trees made of bread pudding," for instance. "His kiss was like gravity," writes another. Two young men are writing in the voices of girls. Much of their poetry rhymes--mostly from hip-hop saturation and not any old-school teachers. Their fiction is fascinating. Today we'll see what they can do with dialogue and playwriting.

I sometimes wish we all spoke in either American Sign Language or a shorthand version. Talking is exhausting, or maybe that's because of my CMSA (Chronic Moderate to Severe Asthma).

6 comments:

dixiedreams said...

sounds like a good time, amy. i'm sure you do a great job with them and that they enjoy you. i wore a rubber ducky necklace all day yesterday when i was working with kids. nobody noticed but it made me feel good. i will get you one--everybody needs a ducky necklace.

Penultimatina said...

I used to work with high school kids until struck down by carpal tunnel syndrome... :)

Amy said...

I leaned heavily on playwright Michael Sepesy today, who let me merge my group of students with his. These kids are way too advanced in drama for me!

And while Sepesy had them writing challenging scenes ("what's the character's intention?"), other groups were bouncing off the walls in some drama games.

I DO need a rubber ducky necklace and I sure don't need carpal tunnel...

Mary, I can't wait to share my poems with you.

Nin Andrews said...

So how do they compare with the IMAGINATION writers? I was amazed at how serene IMAGINATION was this year. Usually there is at least one who is off the wall or into performance poetry or who thinks he knows god and channels or . . .

Amy said...

Imagination HIGH, as it was called, was anything but serene, except during group writing exercises. The Cleveland School of the Arts kids have few inhibitions (they are "empowered," says John Fairman), and LOVE drama--so it was loud. Teenager loud. Loud like I'm not used to, so loud that I'm home now listening to the waves. No music. No radio. No phone.

The visiting poet, Tim Seibles, provided this writing prompt: "His/her kiss was like..." which engendered some, uh, graphic, hormone-laden poems.

dork said...

"Kids" The will suck the life right out of you- but who knows maybe you inspired a future "Eastsider"?- yeah write!