Junior poets laureate share vision for promoting poetry – Eagle-Tribune


NORTH ANDOVER — Poetry is alive and well at North Andover High School – and may be about to become even livelier.

Talia Brown and Izabel Ferrao, both juniors at the high school, were recently selected as the junior poets laureate at the school. Among other ideas, they both said they want to start a poetry club for their fellow students.

Brown and Ferrao were the guests of honor at a reception in the high school library recently. Each read a poem she had written.

Brown said she loves to read and often imagines that she’s in the book she is devouring. She titled her poem “Between the Lines” and wrote how she was “trapped inside the pages of predestined destiny.”

Ferrao’s untitled poem offered a view of the oppression of women. She wrote about a girl who loved a boy who advised her not to speak out, to “keep her mouth shut.”

Brown said she and others enrolled in a class on American thought were assigned to write about their personal philosophies. She expressed her philosophy in the form of a poem.

Among other things, she believes everything happens for a reason. One of her lines was, “Never get your hopes up and you’ll never be let down.”

A resurgence of poetry at North Andover High will not be for girls only. James Lyons, also a junior, shared his poem “Stubborn Regret,” in which he asks readers to “forgive the unforgivable.”

Among young people, “poetry isn’t mainstream,” he said. A musician, Lyons said “accentuating the similarities” among rap, poetry and music might be the key to inspiring passion for verse among the younger crowd.

Ferrao said she wants to generate more publicity about poetry-related events, such as Monday afternoon’s reception. Brown said she wants to organize a poetry club and Ferrao readily agreed.

Karen Kline, North Andover’s former poet laureate who continues to promote her passion for the written word, asked students and faculty, “Is there a poetry club?” There isn’t one now, but Ferrao and Brown accepted the challenge to start such a group.

Kline recited one of her favorite poems, “To My Dear Children,” written by Anne Bradstreet, the first published American poet. Bradstreet lived in what is now North Andover, where she died in 1672.

Kline pointed out Robert Frost, possibly America’s most acclaimed poet, was also from this area. Frost graduated from and later taught at Lawrence High School. He later owned a farm in Derry, New Hampshire.

Brown said she loved Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken.”

Several students applied for the two positions of junior poet laureate. Each submitted three to five poems and offered ideas on how to promote poetry at North Andover High. Brown and Ferrao were selected by a committee that included Kline, Lorene Marx, humanities coordinator for the North Andover schools and Mary Gregoire, retired head of the North Andover High School English department.


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