Dr. Crittenden led the successful poetry workshop at the Rainbow Ball Weekend in April. He wrote an example poem to share with the students who participated and with his permission, I have copied it below. More? Yes, please: Owl Who Laughs The dates for the 8th Annual Rainbow Ball Weekend are April 10-12, 2015. We’ve already started planning! Hope you’re excited too!
Who Will Hear? by Chris Crittenden
i want to be heard by you
more than anyone
but it seems you are less likely to hear me
and that is part of my shout
as i write this.
but i do know one thing:
someone will hear this poem–someone will.
i’m not sure who or where
but i am not the only one
who has felt the brick wall
of a shoulder turning away;
who has felt the iron gate
of family or community, locking shut.
some people close their thoughts
within layers of fear
to keep who i am from getting in.
this poem is me daring to speak.
this poem is my courage,
singing out in a world that
is often ugly in the ways it perceives.
as i write these words,
i realize there is one person
who needs to hear them
more than anyone else–and that is me.
i deserve to embrace my own voice
and my own right to shout out
and to sing and laugh–
to be proud of who i am.
it does not matter
if this poem earns someone else’s high grade.
just by writing down what I feel, what I think–
that makes this poem special,
and it reminds me that I am special,
and through all the emotions
and all experiences that i will have throughout my life;
and all the joys and hopes; the loves
and sweet memories; and also the
frustrations and fears, and
the walls of ears that just won’t hear me,
through all this,
i am beautiful —
just the way i am.