To celebrate Black History Month at Huntsville High School, students will be coming together to compete with the written word in a poetry slam. “It’s an opportunity for the high school students to show some of their original work of poetry,” HHS Black History Month co-chair Yvette Shorten said.

Poetry slam is the art of competitive poetry reading, which puts an emphasis not only on what a poet writes, but how the poet performs, forcing them to concentrate both on what they are saying and how they are saying it.

“They will recite poetry in their own ways,” Shorten said. “Some of it is original and some they have chosen from famous poets.”

While traditional poetry slams restrict the use of music, tonight’s event will have a separate category for those who choose to sing.

“We feel that singing is poetry put to music,” Shorten said. “The differences come with how they present it, put it to words and put the music with it. Even with the songs, we have some who are doing their own original songs.”

Students can compete in poetry or song and dance, and trophies will be given out to first and second place finishers.

The poetry slam will begin tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the high school’s auditorium. Admission is free.

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