Thursday, March 6 was a big day for Bryant Elementary. After six weeks of writing, editing and rehearsing their poems, Bryant students finally made their way to Good Samaritan Family Resource Center to perform in front of an audience of fellow students, parents, and staff, plus a film crew and San Francisco’s Poet Laureate, Alejandro Murguía!
A poet laureate is a poet who is appointed by the government and whose duty it is to represent the written word at various public literary functions. We were very honored and excited when we heard Murguía had accepted our invitation to speak at Bryant’s poetry recital.
Murguía is on the faculty of Latin@ Studies as a creative writing professor at San Francisco State, as well as founder of the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts. He has published several books of literature and poetry and is currently the focus of two films -one being a short based on a story he wrote called “The Other Barrio” and the other being a documentary about him. The film crew for this last film was present for our poetry recital.
Students performed a versatile set of poems, from group style to raps. Most classes focused on a theme for their poems such as “where I’m from”, “color” or “identity”. Despite the bright lights and camera, every poet performed with pride. We were all impressed and proud by how well the students overcame their stage fright and stole the show.
-Julie Morse, Bryant Tutoring Center Program Assistant