Carynne Spalding Jarrell wrote this poem during a sleepless pandemic night. In writing about the experience of ADHD during the pandemic, Carynne wanted to say that she hopes people seek help if needed, no matter their age, job or any other potential stigmas. She also wanted to share the link to SLDS for Ohio State Students, and to highlight that there is a new CARES act funding for mental health at the Ohio State University. Carynne is a currently Master of Public Administration Student at the John Glenn College of Public Affairs, and enjoys writing.
Here’s an interesting pandemic project from Michaela Dengg, originally from Germany, but now a Ph.D. student in the Higher Education and Student Affairs program at The Ohio State University. Her research interest lies with the intertwinement of internationalization and social justice. Her poems, which she writes under the pseudonym Mariam, a moniker of her first and middle name, frequently deal with the tension between the notions of “home” and “home far away from home”.
Where do we find our models of perseverance and endurance? Travis McClerking‘s poem ‘The Other Shoe’ offers one such model. Travis is a Sophomore at OSU majoring in English. He was introduced to poetry through competitive slams. He continues to develop his craft in open mics held at Kafe Kerouac. His high school teacher Dr. Sidney Jones and the Columbus native, Hanif Abdurraquib, are his biggest influences.
One thing that we have had to come to terms with during the pandemic is putting life on hold. In this poem, Angela Acosta pinpoints the frustrations that we put up with so that we can protect the lives of others.
Angela Acosta is a PhD student in Iberian Studies at The Ohio State University. She returned to writing poetry in English and Spanish during the pandemic to document her experiences and write alongside the Spanish women writers whose creative lives she uncovers in her research.
Also access it here in a MS Word accessible document: Life On Hold.
Mustafa Ilgin is in his first year at The Ohio State University studying Political Science, also in the International Affairs Scholars Program. Mustafa’s poetry film asks how do we care for ourselves after relationship difficulties, which many have suffered during the pandemic? The answer: self love!
This wonderful poem by Maya Angelou is still as relevant today as when it was first published, and this is a moving poetry film that elaborates on the themes of freedom articulated by Angelou. Dalal Shalash is from Cincinnati, Ohio and is majoring in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (pre-law) with a minor in Spanish. Dalal’s dream job is to become an immigration lawyer and work for a non-profit.
One of the main experiences of this pandemic has been uncertainty, and this feeling is reflected by this poem by Jessica Winter which is full of questions. Shaped like a droplet of liquid, the form of the poem reminds us that our set of questions is just one drop in an ocean of doubt and uncertainty.
Dr. Jessica Winter is a Professor in Chemical and Biomedical Engineering at The Ohio State University. She has been writing poetry since childhood, and has been recognized by the Southern Poetry Association. She is a graduate of Northwestern University and the University of Texas.
Elizabeth Crump is a soon-to-be fourth-year Microbiology major at the Ohio State University. In reflecting on the past year, Elizabeth has found comfort and catharsis in writing about the everyday challenges she feels. This poem, written in the context of the current pandemic as well as Elizabeth’s impending application to medical school, contrasts passivity with activity in defining one’s actions in the face of trying conditions. Although the path may be unclear, one may find that by seeking within to create a way out of the uncertainty – be it that of the pandemic or of a new phase of life – success can be written in one’s own terms.
One of the things that we have shared in during these difficult times has been a sense of loss. We have all lost so many people, so many things that made our lives make sense. One comforting thing is that we struggle together to deal with these losses. Molly Davis’ poem below uses snapshots of feelings and moments to tell us about loss and the particular challenges of loss during lockdown.
Molly Davis lives, works, and plays in Columbus, OH. Using humor and compassion, Davis makes sense of her life and the world around her by writing. These days, you can find her laughing in her kitchen, cooking for her family. She looks forward to cooking for friends again post-pandemic.
For many of us, pandemic times have forced to think about our family life, especially as many of us have been separated from the ones we love. Elizabeth Shneyderman’s poem, ‘strange token of ancestral determination,’ considers family legacies and what we carry forward with us.
Elizabeth Shneyderman is a second year honors student at the Ohio State University and is double majoring in Computer Science and Economics. She enjoys writing her free time as a creative outlet and is currently looking to become a software engineer after graduation.