MSMHS Poet Laureate Reads Work at Community Event

Junior Jaydn Tapia discusses his poetry-writing process and inspiration, along with samples of his award-winning work.

MSMHS Poet Laureate Reads Work at Community Event
By Ezran Williams

Junior Jaydn Tapia has been named this year’s MSMHS poet laureate. On Friday, April 27th, Jaydn joined a small group of other student poets from Connecticut high schools to read their work at Stonington's La Grua Center. The reading, hosted by The Arts Café Mystic, followed a three hour workshop session with Melanie Greenhouse, who runs poetry workshops for senior citizens. Students, including Jaydn Tapia (Marine Science Magnet High School), Kai Febus (Fitch High School), Jayden Saguiped (Montville High School), Moon Patnoad (Norwich Free Academy), Sarah Doberger (Stonington High School), Pankhudi Prasad (Waterford High School), and Natalie Gray (Westerly High School) had the opportunity to learn about poetry and refine their writing ability.

Jaydn's submitted poems, “obscure crying” and “Shave my head,” both focus on specific moments in his life. The idea for “obscure crying,” first came while driving and tearing up. Jaydn said that he was interested in “the way the lights of the road would turn into obscure shapes of light.” “Shaving my head” has similar personal meaning, recalling details of shaving his head two summers ago. However, he states that, "It's not really about my hair but more so about how when I was a kid”. He explains that he finds the poem to be a reflection of that simpler time: being a kid.

This type of work isn’t new for Jaydn. “I've been writing ever since I could hold a pencil,” he says, explaining that with age, he has “matured into poetry”. His work often blurs the boundary between writing and music, saying “poems tend to be songs” he writes for his guitar. He says he continues to write “because it genuinely makes me content with myself and my work.”

He cites the MSMHS community for welcoming him and making him feel at home. “To the school I want to say thank you for accepting me for who I am and to never live on the boundaries that are set for you by others. Choose life and make it yours. Never let anyone choose it for you.” He adds, “I also want to thank Mr. Jones for giving me an outlet to share my poems and being a real inspiration of mine. Thank you for encouraging me and being not only a great teacher but a great friend.”

obscure crying

lately i found

i always have tears

im my eyes,

they obscure my vision

and refract the light

making me see bright colors.

It's almost beautiful enough

to distract me

from why the tears are there

in the first place.

Shave my head

Every now and then

I think about shaving my head again,

How maybe if I shave my head again

Flowers would start to grow out of my eyes,

Blinding me from the sight of

What the real world looks like,

Maybe if I shaved my head again,

Ill act like I did back then

And maybe if I shaved my head again

The change will be enough to change how this ends.