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Members of the Deep Release Poetry Society gathered in the rotunda of Ashley Hall on April 18.

VSU hosts ‘Skin I’m In’

Students gathered Wednesday, April 18 in the rotunda of Ashley Hall for an evening of poetry, community and self-expression dubbed, “Skin I’m In.”

The event, hosted by the Office for Diversity and Inclusion and Deep Release Poetry Society, featured students sharing poetry on a variety of subjects in an open forum-style setting.

Chatari Humphrey, a graduate assistant with the Office for Diversity and Inclusion, said events like these are important because of the opportunity they afford students, especially those who have experienced discrimination.

“It allows students to poetically describe how they’ve experienced discrimination whether it’s body, gender, sexual or racial discrimination,” Humphrey said. “They can be able to express that through poetry or music.”

Many of the students who attended presented works of poetry to the audience. Their poems covered a variety of subjects, including racial stereotyping, cultural appropriation, unrequited love, systemic racism and gender relations.

Shakeanah Bordes presents her poem during the Skin I’m In event.

The poems were met with applause from the crowd of nearly two dozen students gathered in the rotunda.

One such student, Freshman Gaylyn Farmer, recognized the importance of the event as she enjoyed the poetry that was shared.

“Discrimination is very serious, and it happens to a lot of people,” Farmer said. “Often, it goes unknown.”

Farmer understands how communication and expression can help students cope with the effects of discrimination.

“It’s good for someone to be able to talk to someone,” she said. “Especially like this, poetically, it’s a good way for someone to be able to express their feelings.”

Along with the students’ poetry presentations, the event offered time before and after the poetry reading for attendees to socialize and enjoy refreshments provided by the event’s hosts.

Story by Robert Davison, staff writer. Photos by Bryce Ethridge, News Editor.

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