Staff Writer, Belle Glade
On February 4th, 2015, three young men visited the Belle Glade campus of Palm Beach State College. Their names were Mason Granger, Scott Raven, and Kyle Rapps, and they called themselves the Mayhem Poets.
These men started out their visit by popping into a LIT1000: Introduction to Literature class, and took over the lesson with rhymes, rhythm, and laughs. They got the students involved with their art, and had them express themselves in their own ways through their writing.
Later on that day, the poets hosted a Poetry Slam Event on campus. The event was kicked off with the poets introducing themselves in their own special way, through slam poetry.
Once they turned the mic out to the students, Student Learning Center writing tutor David Woodham recited the poem “Shine, Perishing Republic” by Robertson Jeffers. Then, students Vintwon Jones, Gary Bryant, Torkita Canty, Tamika Mccullough, and Sophie Guerra, read their own poetry in front of teachers and peers alike. From topics ranging from love to chronic illness, these students expressed themselves openly and passionately.
Student Torkita Canty stepped down from the podium and shared how her poem was inspired.
“I was angry and I found my only release was writing it down and letting everyone else know,” she said.
Once the students took a seat, they were all invited to open for the main event the Mayhem Poets would be featured in that Friday at the Dolly Hand Cultural Arts Center.
Mayhem Poet Mason Granger spoke to what it was like working with the students from Belle Glade.
“To be honest, we were surprised. Everyone here was so passionate,” he said. “There’s so much creativity here in such a small community. That’s really rare and really awesome.”