Share Your Voice Paint Branch Poetry Club Provides the Mic

Israel White, Staff Writer

Everyone is an individual. Everyone needs an open space to express themselves. One of the major art forms people use to express themselves is through the written word. Whether it be singing, rapping, or performing poetry.

For those who need this open space, one has been created here at Paint Branch High School in the form of Mic Drop, the student-run poetry club.
Mic Drop gathers every Friday in room 3210 to write and perform poetry. Each week’s session is always open to new members, including those new to the art or new to performing. New voices and new ideas are always welcome, even if they feel undeveloped.

The founding member of Mic Drop, Alexis Mensah, began the club with a goal of creating an open environment where people’s true selves could flow freely. “I really wanted to help create an all inclusive space within our community where people could come together and express themselves without fear of judgement,” says the junior.

Sensitive topics are embraced within the safe atmosphere. Vulnerability is encouraged. Openness is encouraged. Poetry club allows for topics such as life, love, and pain to be presented; and for personal and world-wide affairs to air freely. Do you have something on your mind? Do you have something you want to get off your chest? Say it. This is Poetry Club’s mantra.

If writing is not your thing, it doesn’t have to be. This group wasn’t made to impress, it was made to express. Your voice and your message are far more important than how confusing and complicated you can make a metaphor, or how pretty and purple your prose looks. “We want to hear what everyone has to say regardless of how skillful they believe themselves to be” Mensah assures.

If public speaking is not your thing, it doesn’t have to be. Sharing your work in Mic Drop is not a graded presentation with your English teacher judging you, it is an open mic with other club members listening to you. For those who want a more public open mic space than just performing for members, the club’s private meeting becomes public once every two or three weeks. This open mic moments provide an opportunity for all students to come, view and listen to other people’s work.

The club’s sponsor is Mr. Christopher Ellis, a Paint Branch English teacher and poetry fan who enjoys hearing students perform their pieces. When asked what he gets from poetry club, Ellis answered “I just see people growing up in front of my eyes and it’s an amazing thing…One of the things that I get excited about and why I teach is to see that life blueprint that somebody’s developing lay out.”