The Power of Spoken Word Poetry

Self-expression, laughter and a few tears filled the Spoken Word Poetry workshop at the Women’s Centre of Calgary during three weeks in May.

Spoken Word poetry was introduced to the workshop participants as a means of self-expression.

It is a tool wherein, through the use of mostly common language and the channeling of creative expression, the poet is able to not only relieve herself of the emotions and thoughts she may struggle or be enlightened with; but she is also able to provoke understanding in those who witness her performance.

On the last day of the workshop, the participants had grown comfortable with the presence of each other, and confident enough in their poetry that they performed their work in a stunning array of newfound talent.

By channeling certain aspects of spoken-word format they had learned in the course, they were able to put together small masterpieces they were proud to perform aloud. We had an amazing time facilitating this creative class.

What was even more rewarding was the eagerness and talent that was shared by all the women who participated. Poems ranging from longing to be back home in Indonesia to the cookies that were handed out. Women from all walks of life used the class as an outlet for their creative thought and energy.

Thank you to the Women’s Centre of Calgary for this wonderful opportunity and the participants who reminded us about the power of poetry.

By Asha and Brook, Workshop Facilitators

Below are a sampling of poems created during the Women’s Centre Spoken Word Poetry workshop. Participant’s ages ranged from 14 to 60 years old and came from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. For more information about our unique Lifelong Learning workshops contact Caterina at

A day in my life, by Wafaa

A day in my life has passed / One of the hardest days have passed / I breathe in /Then breathe out / I have long forgotten the feeling of relief / I have long forgotten the feeling of love / I have long forgotten the feeling of life / O, how much I want to remember them / How much I want to be loved /

And /

How much I want to love / A day in my life has passed / And tomorrow will come / Then tomorrow will pass.

Isolation, by Kathrine

I wish I had more power / I wish I could control the / Bad stuff around me /  I wish I had more resolve / I wish I could deal better / I wish my life was better / I try so hard to do what is right / I try so hard I am tired / I am proud of one thing / I am proud of the dignity I give to others / You see / No one deserves to be laughed at or excluded / I am tired of being the outsider.

A cookie was handed to me, by Hanaa

A cookie / A chocolate chip cookie / Was handed to me / On a white, round plate / Fluffy, crispy white dough / Sprinkled with chocolate chips / A taste of sweetness, when bitten / A taste of chocolate and “cris, cris, cris wa”  heard /  A cookie / A chocolate chip cookie / Was handed to me / On a white, round plate / I enjoyed the taste / I enjoyed the sound / I enjoyed the cookie that was handed to me.


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