My name is Alani Snipes and I’m a part of the Poetic Minds class at Morningside High School. The Annual GetLit Classic Slam is a poetry competition for high schools around the Los Angeles area. When we arrived, we were quickly rushed into the theater. The performers were called to the back for a pre-competition warm up, eliminating most of the nervousness we all felt. Our slam team consisted of Jordan Paige, Zayin Clemmons, Naomi Arnold, LaDeshanante Gant, Autumn Young, and I. In our theater, it was a full house, filled with four schools including us. The host introduced the judges and explained the rules, along with providing a sample performance from a GetLit player, Kyland Turner. The first school to perform was our team member Naomi Arnold. She brought the house down with her classic poem “Selfish” by Jill Scott and her original response poem. There were four rounds and one “Shorty” round for the performers with exceptionally short poems. We had one group, LaDeshanante Gant and I, who performed together “I Cry” by Tupac Shakur along with their original response.
The poems read by other performers were genuinely felt throughout the room. They all extruded true emotion and their connection to the piece was evident. Once we reached the end of the five rounds, the host tallied up the combined scores of each school and place each one. We received third place— a spot higher than last year — but did not advance from the quarter finals to the semi-finals.
Overall, we had such a wonderful time experiencing another year of the Classic Slam, obtaining third place and sharing each other’s thoughts orally.