Student readers prepare College to ‘Get Lit!’

Dave Koshar stood poised at the podium with a sizable stack of white papers clenched in his hands. “I’m a little nervous,” he told the audience at the Library Auditorium. After he introduced his poem, Koshar’s anxiety seemed to disappear instantly.

“You!” the freshman history major shouted into the microphone. “You look for words of beauty.”

So began Koshar’s poem “I Feel Like Edgar” and another Student Reading Series (SRS), sponsored by Ink on Monday night. The event featured three students reading a collection of their work to an audience of friends, Ink members and writing enthusiasts. The November edition of the SRS also kicked off Ink’s “Lit Week,” a series of events sponsored by the campus literature group, which will include tomorrow afternoon’s Visiting Writers Series featuring Monique Truong and Saturday’s semesterly art celebration, “The Goods.”

Joleen Ong, senior international studies major, shared a poem and a story she had written as a freshman at Emerson College. Each piece reflected an attention to detail that strengthened the overall effect of her writing.

“I try to make my writing as detailed as possible,” Ong, who said that she enjoys screenwriting, said. “I like to use a lot of detail through dialogue, to give the reader a better feel of the scene.”

Ong’s story, which was an excerpt from a larger work, focused on a prolonged flashback which described the main character’s wild adventures involving an ice cream man and the heinous use of bomb bags. The story included many tiny elements of adolescence that had the audience smiling appreciatively.

Ong, who has not performed at many writing events at the College, was pleased with the night’s outcome. “I saw this last year, and I thought it was cool,” she said. “I’m glad I did it.”

Nicole Gough, senior English/secondary education major, followed Ong and steered the event in a completely different direction. “A Fascist in New York City” described a strange encounter in a lonely bar, while “Wedding 2005” described the ugly work of a wedding waitress. Like Ong’s work, Gough’s writing was most powerful when it displayed fascinating detail.

“Everything’s a little autobiographical, but sometimes I exaggerate a little bit,” Gough said. “I try to see things in a larger perspective.”

Koshar’s work was the most unsettling of the three, but he handled many tough issues admirably. “Mother and Child,” for example, told the story of a mother about to commit suicide. Koshar said that the situation was symbolic of the relationship between the earth and humanity.

“In the poem, humanity . is the greatest thing to happen, but leads to the earth’s downfall,” Koshar said. “Human destruction can become a habit, and we don’t even realize we’re doing it.”

All three writers illustrated a knack for performing their work with great passion. The audience generously applauded the students, and Ink appreciated the support. The Student Reading Series was a successful look into the skills of three talented writers.

A line from Koshar’s rapturous first poem seemed to capture the mood of the evening perfectly: “And all the while, I’m taken into the wild world of words, mere words.”