Calendar

Poetry Workshop: Spoken Word for Middle School Students

May 7, 2022
11 am–12:30 pm
The Griot Museum of Black History, 2505 St. Louis Ave.

How do you tell your story? How do others experience it? What does transformation look like to you, and where does its potential reside in your body?

In conjunction with Nicole Miller: A Sound, a Signal, the Circus, The Griot Museum of Black History hosts a series of site-specific poetry workshops that engage with the history of their location in St. Louis. Led by poet Precious Musa and collaborators, the spoken word workshops offer opportunities to reflect on how sensory perceptions can reveal answers to questions of belonging, displacement, and erasure, exploring what it means to live in the wake of the past.

No prior preparation or background is necessary to participate. This 90-minute program is free and open to the public.

The May 7 workshop is led by Precious Musa and Edil Hassan and is designed for middle school students.

Space is limited to 20 participants. Register here >>

Additional poetry workshops will be held on June 11 at The Griot for high school students and July 16 at the Kemper Art Museum for adults.

Questions about the workshop or transportation reimbursement? Contact Meredith Lehman, head of museum education, at lehman.meredith@wustl.edu.

About the facilitators

Precious Musa is a first-generation Nigerian American Black girl. She graduated from Smith College with her BA in English and Africana Studies with a Poetry Concentration and earned her MFA in Writing from Washington University in St. Louis. Precious’s writing often engages the inner life of the body, fugitivity, and belonging. She participated in the 2020 Tin House Workshop where she worked under Hanif Abdurraqib. Her poems appear in “Tupelo Quarterly,” “West Trestle Review,” “Black Perspectives,” and elsewhere. As a way to begin answering questions around Black grief and joy formed during undergrad, Precious developed, curated, and launched “Listen, Look: A Reconciliatory Journey Through Black Grief and Joy,” a multimedia installation featuring Black St. Louis artists. The installation brought her closer to her love for visual storytelling, and she’s been immersed in that world ever since. Precious currently resides in St. Louis where she’s learning how to commune with her ancestors, speak with them, and language their story.

Edil Hassan is a writer from Vermont. She has received support from Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center and the Stadler Center for Poetry. Her work has appeared in Poetry and the Academy of American Poets poem-a-day series. She has been anthologized in the Breakbeat Poets Vol. 3 Halal If You Hear Me. Last year, her chapbook was selected by Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani for the New Generation African Poets series by the African Poetry Book Fund. She is currently an Olin Fellow in the MFA program at Washington University in St. Louis where she studies poetry and teaches Introduction to Poetry.

Image credits

Photo of Precious Musa by Ibn Orator; photo of Edil Hassan by Kauther Hassan

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