Hi 7th hour!
Please respond to the following questions about today’s presentation:
1.) Which of Sierra’s poems stood out to you the most and why? I’m not asking which ones you liked best; I’m asking which ones do you now remember and why do you think that is the case.
2.) Sierra uses diction (her word choice) exceedingly well. How can you relate her talent to your own diction in your writing? Think of ALL your writing, both creative and analytical because diction applies to all writing.
3. What do you think of Sierra’s delivery (the way she presents herself onstage)? Why do you feel this way? What can you learn/apply about her delivery to your own delivery when we give speeches?
Again, read what people ahead of you have already written about and see if you can come up with something new as well as responding directly to what people have already written.
You have until 1:00 on this coming Monday (Feb. 29) to respond to today's discussion post.
1. The poem that stood out to me was the one from the perspective of Jeffrey Dahmer’s mother, the mother of a murderer. I thought the point of view alone was extremely interesting because the voice of a murderer’s mother is quite neglected to be heard when all I see are headlines of the criminal on the news. Due to media’s center of attention, I admit I sometimes forget that murderers have families, friends, and loved ones, as well. When she mentioned how others have criticized the mother on how she was unaware of her son’s “problem” I was appalled. Initially I thought, “how dare you rebuke the caretaker on her son’s unpredictable actions.” Possibly, this poem stood out the most because it provoked a reaction out of me. My reaction was disgust towards the criticizers, pain for the mother, and curiosity on what other emotions the mother must have felt when she heard of her son’s first murder. Furthermore, her words reminded me how ignorant the public is when it comes to important voices, stories, and emotions that are involved with other events around the world. It made me wonder how many lost voices there are because they did not receive any screentime. Since the majority of society focuses on what the media portrays, there are millions of voices washed away because they’ve been neglected on the news. I thought her writing was truly unique and the realizations it provoked made this piece truly memorable.
2. One reason why Sierra was my favorite poet from Writers Week was her precise use of diction. Her gift to choose certain words over another is able to bring life and passion into her stories that are immediately felt by the audience. Although I am not even close to Sierra’s talent, I notice that repetitive words in my formal writing extremely bother me. I try to be more aware of my repetition and ask my editor, usually my sister, for suggestions or I look it up in a thesaurus myself. Similar to Chris, I was not aware how my diction lacks in variety when I speak out loud. Now looking back on my speech, I typically resorted to words that I use frequently in my vocabulary. However, when I have time for creative writing I love choosing words that my mind immediately thinks of as a response to my emotions. Especially in poetry, I love finding the perfect word and emphasizing it through repetition or synonyms. Although I am not certain on how strong my diction is, I will try to improve on it in all of my writings in the future.
3. I was absolutely blown away by Sierra’s stage presence. I thought she was very charismatic and her passion for the words she was reciting was further emphasized through her gestures. I admired her talent to memorize every word, but also being able to remember her pauses and when to put more emphasis on certain words. Her confidence on stage was amazing and it enhanced her performance in ways I neglected to realize in performances prior to Writers Week. Personally, speaking in front of an audience makes me nervous, which made her performance that much more impressive. However, I will never know if she was truly comfortable on stage or she was simply a great actress at appearing confident. I do not know how my experience would have changed if her voice was shaking or she simply stood behind a podium with a monotone voice, but I know her delivery significantly impacted her performance. In the future, I will try to find techniques to calm my nerves before presenting my speech and I will also attempt to pry my hands off the podium and use gestures when necessary.
1) The poem that stood out to me the most was her poem about Ariel. the reason I remember it the most was because of what she claimed Ariel's response to the poem was. It was a very superficial reason to remember her poem, but I remembered this simply because I thought it was funny how Ariel thought Sierra was being a jerk for writing a poem about her. Also I could definitely see myself reacting the same way at someone who wrote a poem about my life, even if it was meant to be super encouraging.
2) I thought Sierra used a lot of simple words that still painted a great picture. Everything she said was easy to understand and she didn't try to use terms that make people sound intelligent, but no one else understood. What I will take away from her is how many allusions she made to popular things and how much pop culture she integrated into her poetry and just her stage presence. It again made her easy to understand and also a lot more enjoyable to listen to. Though it may be hard to integrate pop culture into a essay, I'm going to try to do that to make writing more enjoyable for myself and my readers.
3) I think the thing that struck me the most about her stage presences was just how comfortable she looked and how much she seemed to enjoy it. Taking a video during her presentation may not seem that professional, but it really helped connect her to the audience. I think that was one of her greatest strength, her connection with her audiences, every time she looked at our discretion it felt she was looking right at me. What I'm going to take away from this is to be confident when going on stage. More that that I wasn't to remember to not be afraid to be myself and show some personality during my speech. It was something I really enjoyed seeing from her and now it's something I want to integrate into my own speaking.