Poetry Slam!

Peter Seng

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January 16th at 6:30 pm was Long Beach Poly’s annual Poetry Slam at the Poly Playhouse directed by Drama Director Linda Bon.
In the beginning and throughout the show students from the Poly Jazz program performed a Jazz combo. The excellent musicians were Ben Rifkin on Trumpet, Shogo Ellefson on Bass, Nathan Greer on Drums and Nathan Mai on Alto Sax.
The panel of judges consisted of Daryl Holmlund, an English teacher at Long Beach Poly, advisor for the High Life student newspaper and serving his 5th year as a Slam judge, Gwen Larsen, an English teacher at Long Beach Poly who is a supporter of Poly’s artistic community, Andrew Shrout, an improv coach for the Long Beach Unified School District who takes his experiences from teaching, Peter Seng, a Poly senior student that stepped in for judge Angelina Taylor who was the winner of last years slam with her compelling poem,” Up Until Now”, and Jenna Webb a 5th year teacher at Long Beach Poly.
“I truly enjoyed being able to hear these stories that students had to tell,” said Webb, “they were honest, vulnerable, and brave. I know that I could never be courageous enough myself to be so open and exposed, yet these students were able to do so- and they were able to do it so eloquently.”
There were 5 categories: Identify, Mental States, Love and Loss, Injustice and Mixed Bag.
The Jazz Combo played , “There Will Never Be Another You” and “Wave” during the show.
Taylor McEachin won with her astonishing poem “How to be a good girlfriend,” which showcased how self love is the first step to loving someone else. Briana Mendez-padilla won 2nd place with her heartfelt poem about body image standards titled “Image” and Mariah De Vera winning 3rd place with her poem “Keats”.