Preparation for OutReach #1

September 29th: Preparing for outreach (Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility)

            Sunday the 29th of September was gloomy. It’s actually my favorite weather. Driving to Ypsilanti I was anxious to meet with Rob, Adam and David.  We met at Cultivate, I enjoyed Cultivate. Mostly because it was a coffee shop that can hold more than ten people. I walked on from the soak of the heavy rain and I sat on a stool at 4:00pm. I waited for minutes before Rob’s voice took me out of the daydream, cultivate was playing Korean R&B music.  

            It was a good experience to sit with Eastern Legends, we sat around the picnic table as the rain continued outside. The coffee shop was slightly dimmed, and the perfect light with the natural light from the window was the perfect weather to read the poems of some of the inmates. I didn’t know what to expect from these workshops, and the nerves mixed with anxiousness clouded my mind from accepting the work. Adam came in with his leather bag and pulled out a laptop as we all did. The yellow manila folder was filled with composition paper of the work that had been worked on from the workshop. Each writer was as passionate as the next. Their words resonated. We were only required to scribe, and correct grammatical mistakes as well as recommend alternative words. I couldn’t help but to be involved in their pieces as I was trying to type the poems up. This process was fulfilling. I have not been to the prison yet, but knowing that the poems came from these workshops is nothing short of impressive. The subjects were the most satisfying. Subjects like connection, relationships and even the emotional capacity for death and loss was inspirational.

            I look forward to working with the women of WHV. To be able to have a glimpse of the capability of creating these pieces is exciting. The preparation is one of the components that I am looking forward to, I deal with high school students and I am curious to learn how to interact and be able to teach adults. I also look forward to working with the Eastern alumni, it’s inspiring to hear more about their successes after achieving their MFA’s in creative writing. It makes me just that much hopeful. I am glad I am in this program.

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