I invited a group of people to become the voices of the Penokee Hills and to collaborate in the writing of poems to co-narrate the stories of the places we cherish, the values we hold and the needs that we share.
We began in the circle with an activity designed to allow us to hear some of the many voices of the Penokee Hills. As I described in the Wordle page, I gathered keywords from interviews and public events, keywords that are representative of people’s relationship to the landscape of the place that they cherish. We made use of those keywords as the raw material for the poems, like the potter’s clay. To give structure to the poetry writing activity I offered an “arc” for the poem which allowed the participants to organize those keywords with a series of action statements. Becoming the poets of their own landscape the participants spoke in the many voices of the Penokee Hills and shared a vision of the community and many of its core values.
After each group performed their poem we concluded the evening together in the circle where people shared reflections on how the event had allowed them to begin thinking in new ways about the conflict.
Below is a video compilation followed by a slideshow that together document the collective poetry event. The poems themselves can be seen in the next page.
Click image below for slideshow