Macalester students take top honors with slam poetry team [VIDEO]

Macalester students take top honors with slam poetry team [VIDEO]
Macalester senior Dylan Garity performs for City Pages

The Macalester College slam poetry team's 2010-2012 season was the most successful run in college slam history. They ranked third and first, and recently traveled to Los Angeles where they placed second. Team member Dylan Garity was also named Best Poet this year.

The team is made up of freshman Rachel Rostad; sophomores Anna Binkovitz, Kat Fleckenstein, and Abbie Shain; junior Niko Martell; and senior Garity. Together, they have spent an entire semester writing and workshopping six to 10 hours a week. They consider themselves to be a family, and respect each other's work. Their focus is on writing authentic poems taken from their own life experiences.

Check out a few examples:

"My grandma is just one of many people who have difficulty seeing us as a family. In that way, 'Lottery Winners' was a response to that frustration. But, more importantly, this poem was written out of love for my mom, dad, and brother." --Rachel Rostad

"This piece is fairly new, and I wrote it because I wanted to write a poem that could leave the audience feeling good. I used hummingbirds simply because I really like them, and I hope that is evident in the poem." --Kat Fleckenstein

"Half of my extended family is from Wisconsin. Watching what's been happening there over the last year and a half has been really difficult, and I'm glad I found a way to share my family's story." --Dylan Garity

"'For Those Girls' was inspired by the disgusting rap written by three boys in my senior class, and the even more disgusting inaction of the administration and the girls included in the rap. There was another more overarching inspiration though. Feminism is often seen as a great shouting match in which you must always be angry at someone else. While I am angry at people and shouting in this piece, the main message is for the girls to stop apologizing for their presence at my school." -Anna Binkovitz

Related content: Macalester College slam poetry team takes top honors (Slideshow)

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