The Poetry Experience meets on the second and fourth Saturdays of the month at the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington. On a recent Saturday afternoon at the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington, a group of nine people sit in a circle in a third-floor meeting room. They're here to write poetry through a group called The Poetry Experience. It's led by Rajnii Eddins, a spoken word poet, artist, activist, and community leader. Rajnii Eddins, seen here in a 2019 file photo outside the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington. More from Vermont Public: Homegoings: Poet Rajnii Eddins on using ‘courageous vulnerability' to navigate the darkness He begins the meeting with affirmations: Rajnii: “So the peace and creativity we seek” Group: “So the peace and creativity we seek” Rajnii: “Mounts our bodies and sits on the chairs of our hearts” Group: “Mounts our bodies and sits on the chairs of our hearts” Rajnii: “Spreading joy and love around us all” Group: “Spreading joy and love around us all” Rajnii and his mother, Randee Eddins, cofounded The Poetry Experience in Seattle in 1998. When they moved to Vermont 13 years ago, they brought the program with them. Originally it was geared toward active writers, but Rajnii says it's transformed into an opportunity for people of all experience levels to create something. “People would come, and they hadn't really ever written before. So I wanted to say OK, maybe it might be better in this particular space to have it be a space to create work,” he says. “So that way it gives people who haven't ever done it before the opportunity to try their hand at it, and people who have maybe another way to recharge and replenish their well as far as inspiration and playfulness with words.” At most meetings, Rajnii leads the group through a series of exercises to get the creative juices flowing. On this Saturday, he gives participants a series of words and about 10 minutes to free write. “It can be anything — stream of consciousness, a story, a song, poem, whatever's on your mind, your heart,” […]
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