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Rhyme, verse turn teens into bards

SOUTH POINT — It was a big brother who led the way for Jessica Gordon to try her creative hand at writing poetry. Now the Ironton High teen finds meter and rhyme another way to tell her truth.

Monday afternoon she joined other teens at the second annual Teen Poetry Slam at the South Point branch of the Briggs Library.

“My brother was a big poetry person and I used to read a lot of his stuff,” Gordon said. “When I got into it, it just flows.”

For the library event, she offered a poem she wrote about the Iraq War after seeing a television show about the conflict.

“I love to write about anything that catches my inspiration,” she said.

It only took her 20 minutes to write the war poem, which featured a free verse structure.

“It just came to me and I just kept writing,” Gordon said.

The poetry slam came about when Amy Ward, young adult programs coordinator, wanted a way to mark National Poetry Month.

Through her work with teens, Ward was aware of the popularity personal poetry writing has for that age group.

“I wanted to do something creative for them to express themselves,” she said.

Kenna Prichard, who recently moved to Proctorville after graduating from a Texas high school at the age of 16, has had several of her writings published on the Internet on the Poetry.com Website.

Prichard started writing since she was 12 and prefers to develop rhyming schemes in her works.

“I started writing my feelings down and it made sense and became a poem,” she said.

The poem she presented at the library, which won an Editor’s Choice distinction from Poetry.com, came about after a breakup with a boyfriend.

“When I write my feelings, may be it will help someone else,” she said.