Poetry And Chill Celebrates 2 Years Of Giving Back To Kids In OKC Metro

Friday, November 15th 2019, 4:58 am
By: Ashley Holden

Poetry and Chill started as an Oklahoma open mic night, but now organizers are celebrating two years of events across the country.
The founder and host of Poetry and Chill, Gregory II started it as a platform for himself and other local musicians.
"I didn't ever think I would be teaching kids and students and be in front of a classroom," said Gregory II. 
But in just two years, he and other locals have created literacy workshops for students in multiple districts in the metro, helped with talent shows and took their open mic nights on a college tour across the country. 
Poetry and Chill visited almost 30 colleges in one year. 
"I felt like that would be a group I could actually express myself with," said Douglass High School Freshman Zinari Waldrup.
Waldrup started working with Gregory II on his writing even before the workshop started at his school. The high school freshman said it's a way he can work through different challenges and struggles in life. 
"Me writing I just feel like I'm letting a lot of emotion and pain out," said Waldrup. 
A "safe space" is the goal of Poetry and Chill's workshops. A chance for students to talk about self love, forgiveness, hardships and even school.
Waldrup's writing has helped him heal, but its also given him a new goal in life.  
"I also plan on being a motivational speaker," said Waldrup.
And the community response has given Gregory II a new vision for poetry and chill. 
"We just wanna take it worldwide," said Gregory II.