Friday, May 9, 2008

Giving Teens a Voice

This week the Seattle Times had a big article that addressed how Slam Poetry is giving teens a voice where they felt they had no voice. It speaks of how much those that are writing and speaking the Poetry are being changed through the experience.

Eighteen year old Mikeya Jackson-Harper speaks: "It was hard dealing with family issues at home, and I didn't feel like I had a voice anywhere so I started writing to release tension. It helped for awhile so I have just kept doing it."

Ronnie Reynolds, 19 says that "Poetry helps me out, it helps me understand everything. When I write things down on a page, it is sort oflike mapping it out for myself, so I know where I am at."
His poetry has a hip-hop edge; his words rattle into beats, an expression of his need to be heard.

Chap Clark, a very respected voice for the Youth of America, says that our youth today is the most alienated generation in history. They are given everything, except our time, attention and respect.

Technology has definitely made the communication gap so much bigger. It is almost as if we are speaking two different languages, however, we must bridge this divide.

No generation has ever carried so much promise. If we are willing to try to walk the bridge, we will find amazing people with dreams, vision and energy to see the world transformed. If we are willing to believe in them and help walk alongside them to support them in their dreams, we are unleasing potential that is also bigger and more impacting than ever before.

Alex is one in this generation. A couple of months ago, Alex put together an art nite called "This Ain't Your Granny's Poetry." He invited gifted musicians to play, gifted photographers and artists to display their work, and he gave the gift of his Slam Poetry. Alex looks rebellious with his dreadlocks, but underneath he is a talented young man who has a great take on life. He addressed the issues of teens and 20 somethings, urging the girls to dress appropriately and the young men to stay away from pronography. He also had a word for the Church of America; start getting real, move away from the walls and be with the people that Jesus hung out with.

Missio Lux is hosting another Art Nite: This one is called "This Thing's Made of Sticks" on Friday, June 13th at Pine Lake Covenant Underground. If you are in the area, don't miss it, you will experience walking a bridge that will not only help you know the younger generation, but you will find out a lot about yourself as well.

See you June 13th.

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