Poetry: Written, Spoken, Rapped is a mini-course about writing and performing poetry in three genres: written word, spoken word, and rap. In four integrated videos, a diverse group of writers and teachers take viewers step-by-step through the process of creating poems, whether they’re written for the page or for performance on the stage. Each video concludes with follow-up resources, including craft helps, performance models, and downloadable outlines of course content. The goal of the course is to introduce students and aspiring poets to the rich range of poetic expression available to poets today.
The concept for this course is derived from an initiative of former Maine Poet Laureate Wesley McNair called “Written Word, Spoken Word, and Hip-Hop.” The script for the videos was co-written by Wesley McNair and Gibson Fay-LeBlanc; McNair also wrote the links on craft and the Guide for Teachers. Eric Axelman and Sonya Tomlinson helped with the craft links on rap and spoken word.
The design and videography for the website were provided by Earf Studios, founded and operated by Ana Gonzalez and Jeff Matteis. Financial sponsors for the project include The Maine Writers and Publisher’s Alliance, whose director, Joshua Bodwell, offered ongoing assistance and advice. Support was also provided by the Maine Humanities Council and the Maine Arts Commission.