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Art & Culture, Condor Profiles

Curie alumni comes back to inspire current students through poetry

Every Thursday, students gather after eighth period for Lyrical Revolution. Lyrical Revolution is a poetry group at Curie High School meant to express feelings, ideas, and thoughts through poetry. Curie alumni Willie Ramirez (2011) has dedicated himself to the program for the past seven years.

Ramirez joined Lyrical Revolution back in 2010 and has been involved with program since. He feels that poetry is a part of him, and has always been really passionate about it.  After graduation, Ramirez decided to come back to try and help the group with their work. When the teachers running the group saw his determination to strive the group forward, they decided to make him a bigger part of the group. Ramirez now coaches the group with another Curie graduate.

“I have such a big passion for poetry and just being around students that are just how I once was give me motivation to strive in my everyday life,” Ramirez said.

The program offers students an outlet to showcase their talents in various forms, constantly striving for original work. Students participate in spoken word events in which they compete with other poets.

“Louder than a Bomb is one of the biggest youth poetry festivals in the country, which we try and join every year. They give us an opportunity to expose us to other poets and poems but also to open up and see other kids views around the country through their poetry,” Ramirez said.

Despite his involvement in the program, Ramirez was not always a good writer. He claims that his high school teachers really pushed him to grow as a poet. He said that Ms. Spachman, a former teacher of his, really encouraged him to perform as an artist.

“I am very good with words and the english language and of course with poetry. So what better way to help someone with spoken words rather than hearing it first hand,” Ramirez said.

Ramirez is a student at UIC, and works two part time jobs, yet still manages to come one day of the week to Curie.

“I do my best to fit one day at Curie into my schedule,” Ramirez said.

Curie students often come from rough parts of the city and take pride in joining the program.

“Honestly, even from when I was in the group as a student, we never really pushed or strived to win competitions or become a competitive group. Our main focus was to have fun and be apart of lyrical. It’s always more so growing as a person than an artist,” Ramirez said.

Students take the opportunity to write poetry as a way to display their talents and are grateful for Ramirez’s involvement in the program.

“I work on poetry work anytime throughout the day or when I have an idea. Coming here and getting help from Willie makes my poems more centered and better written,” one student said.