Poetry Slam 2016

For two days, February 10-11, Pioneer High School hosted their second annual Poetry Slam. Two of our writers wrote poems that they would like to share.

Philip Escamilla, Senior:

It’s funny, really, how quickly, our value drops.

We live in a society where value is measured by being the best.

First place is more important than second, and the life of a beauty queen is mourned more heavily than the life of a queen of true beauty.

I’m not going to try, because I know I won’t be as good as him, why would I apply there when I know they won’t accept me?

But what about accepting yourself?

This poem was not written to put down those of us who have fund success, or those that are “better” than the rest of us.

This poem was written to say that it’s ok.

It’s okay if your voice isn’t strong but your heart is.

It’s okay if being different is what makes you feel normal

It’s okay if you’re not Valedictorian, it’s ok if you don’t go to Harvard, it’s ok if you can’t throw a football, if you collect smiles instead of likes, or comic books instead of girlfriends.

What isn’t ok is if you don’t feel ok about yourself.

It’s okay if you’re shorter, taller, bigger, thinner, if you stay awake all night and don’t know why, or if you’re voted most popular and you still feel alone

It’s ok to be the only person that understands you, because you’re the only you there is.

God doesn’t have one mold for everybody, he has one mold for each body.


Maddy Guerra, Senior:

Is art you and me?

Is art me reciting this poem?

Is art me writing this poem because I was promised and extra test grade?

Art is Van Gogh saying “I long so much to make beautiful things. But beautiful things require effort-and disappointment and perseverance.”

Art is the book that leaves you gasping for air as you clutch your book tighter and beg the author not to kill off the one person you have been able to relate to all your life.

Art is the song that leaves you speechless, not because of how the singer looks, but because you couldn’t have put how you feel in such beautiful words.

Art is the movie that leaves you with a heavy heart and tear stained cheeks as you beg Elizabeth to understand the Mr. Darcy loves her in his own way.

Art is that one picture you took of the sky, that you swear you see God in.

Art is the expression of application of human creative skill and imagination.

So what does it mean when someone sits naked on a toilet doing so ‘in the name of art.’

What does it mean when slam poetry is called the death of art?

Slam poetry is the death of art because it is judged by an applause meter that isn’t actually here, but is louder and more present than the people screaming about the injustices of the world. This nonverbal competition combined with art should never go together.

So why am I here vying for your attention?

Why is everyone here not worrying about the message they are trying to give and instead focusing on how loud the crowd is when they are done.

These poetry slams have little to do with poetry and more to do with slamming the first world problems we are facing. Now i know that there are some real problems here but how did poetry end up being screaming into a microphone?

How did we start with William Shakespeare’s

“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate”

And that’s why slam poetry is the death of art.