“Poetry helps you release your emotions,” said 34-year-old Paterson resident, Andre Stewart. The first poem he had written was to impress a girl when he was about 12. Now, 22 years later, although the fondness for the girl has faded, his love for poetry continues to grow.
In the open-reading portion of the Poetry Reading event that took place at the Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College on Saturday, Stewart read a poem in tribute to Bob Marley entitled, “Who Was Bob?”
From Marley to Martin Luther King Jr., the topics of the open-reading section were diverse as poets from not only Paterson, but also neighboring cities, recited their poems.
“For me, Paterson is connected to poetry,” said Maria Mazziotti Gillan, the executive director of the Poetry Center, whose writing has been influenced by her early life in the city. “I think poetry teaches us how to be human; it’s a way of connecting people, a way of telling stories to one another.”
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