My junior year of high school, my IB literature teacher did a poetry unit on Langston Hughes in honor of Black History Month. I spent those couple of months reading up on Hughes poems and I was so intrigued by the way his words painted a picture, spoke to me, and more importantly how it riled me up. Reading his poems decades later, I could still feel his anger, his rage, his grievances, and his call for change.
That was the beginning of my love for poetry. From the time in junior year when I was introduced to Hughes to almost 4 years later, I have a collection of about 50 poems that I have written. I attribute my love for poetry to my junior year literature teacher, and more importantly to Hughes who inspired to use poetry as an outlet.
The goal of this assignment was to reflect on what type of artist I think I am. And I honestly don’t know… I am the type of artist that doesn’t know what type of artist I am. I am the type of artist that doesn’t make art for an audience but for my eyes only. I am the type of artist that creates art to express my emotions. I treat my poems like a calendar or better yet a newspaper archive. My poems reflect my mental state my ever-changing personality, so I view my collection of poems as a journal that tells the story of the different periods of my life.
I wanted to share one of my favorite poems I’ve written because I can write a blog post telling you that I am an artist and that I am a poet but I would rather show you.
This is a poem I wrote in 2019 a few weeks after international women’s day. I write about my anger towards the misogynistic and patriarchal society we live in and about my disappointment in womens’ rights initiatives that are nothing but words and empty promises.
As part of the IB program at my high school, I was in the process of completing my capstone project, called the extended essay, which is a 4,000-word paper. My extended essay topic was about women’s rights in the Taliban. With all the things I learned during my research and upon attending an international women’s day-inspired art gallery show, I was inspired and infuriated. I did not know what to do with the influx not to mention juxtaposing feelings I was experiencing so I used poetry as an outlet to express how I was feeling.