Poetry group Lyric and The Peel team up for Halloween open mic night

Alexander McCall

Appalachian State University’s poetry group Lyric and student-run literary arts publication The Peel will come together to present an open mic night Thursday at 7 p.m. in Belk Library, Room 114.

The event will feature prizes for best poem and best costume, and performers of any skill level are encouraged to attend.

“You don’t have to be a great poet to have something to say,” said Connor Childers, a senior creative writing major and member of the poetry committee.

The event welcomes students wearing their most creative Halloween attire to read and enjoy poetry in what is expected to be a diverse display of expressive genres.

The poetry doesn’t have to be themed around Halloween, but members of The Peel said festive content is encouraged.

“It would be great to get some creepy poetry in there,” Mark Kenna, associate editor for The Peel, said.

A panel of three judges, consisting of one representative from both Lyric and The Peel as well as Department of English professor Lynn Doyle, will decide winners of the costume and poetry contests. Prizes will be awarded at the end of the night.

Open mic nights are not uncommon in Boone, filling coffee shops multiple times a week to shed light on local and student performers.

“A lot of poets around here have select audiences and regulars, but this will be more of a potpourri of whoever walks in the door,” said poetry editor Robert Layman.

Lyric and The Peel have not collaborated recently. Though both clubs are involved around creative expression of the English language, a difference stands between spoken poetry of Lyric, which relies on rhythmic dialogue between the poet and the audience, and written poetry of The Peel, which flows more naturally on paper.

“There’s sort of this tension between poetry for page and poetry for stage,” Childers said. “I think this is leading to some sort of interconnectedness between two clubs and that we’re probably going to interact more.”