GHM: Arlington Public Library Teen Zone

Posted by on 01.29.13 in 2012, Events, Guerilla Tales, Haiku, Partners in Haiku | 2 comments

GHM: Arlington Public Library Teen Zone

Arlington Library is doing great things with teen programming across the city, and the Teen Zone in Northeast Arlington has created a safe, and supportive environment for their after school youth mainly due to their incredible leader, Veronica, and the dedicated presence of local mom, Maria.

When Veronica invited Guerilla Haiku in to do some Haikuing around the library after school, I could not say no, despite the darkening skies. (Even in Texas the night descends sooner in Winter).

The result of our 2 hours at the Library was an initially hesitant group of teens writing, drawing and creating all over the parking lot of the library. There were many amazing moments with many different youth. But here is one of my favorite:

My scavenger hunt team was a group of older teens, who were very reluctant to start. The youngest of them started drawing spray cans, and writing about his love of drawing…a young woman started creating chalk art with layer upon layer of color…and one young man, who had never written a poem before was coerced into starting one by a very determined me.

Two lines in he had to leave.

And i turned to another young man who had been observing, laughing, and thinking very hard the whole time about what he might want to write about…

“Finish it,” I said- “it’s easier to end somebody else’s thought than come up with your own. We can’t leave the poem unfinished.”

The observer accepted the challenge, and here’s the collaboration:

I’m becoming new
this guy experienced life
like no other has

And 2 poets were born. The observer, no longer observing, chalked 2 more pieces in the minutes remaining. And by the time we all headed inside for our Closing Ceremony, every student had put their words to pavement.

A good evening. Very good.

Thank you Veronica and Maria, and thanks to the Arlington Youth that humored a stranger with chalk and shared your words with her.

For more photos from that magical evening click HERE.

  • Veronica

    Come Back!!! We miss you Caley! Give me a call whenever you are in town for another Haikuing Session! We loved it! Thank you Caley for inspiring us!

    -APL Veronica (Northeast Branch, Teen Zone!)

    • Haiku Mistress

      Thank YOU, Veronica- for inspiring me. I will talk to you soon about Texas dates!