Altoma Concludes Her Tenure as Young City Poet - News Blog - 91鶹Ʒ


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Altoma Concludes Her Tenure as Young City Poet

Altoma, a Year 12 student at V6 Sixth Form, is concluding her tenure as the Young City Poet after engaging in various citywide events over the past twelve months to share her captivating poetry.


The role of City Poet, akin to poet laureates, traditionally embodies the city's conscience and contemplates pertinent issues. In a similar vein, the Young City Poet serves as a voice for the city's youth, crafting poems and presenting them at public gatherings.

Altoma's journey began in 2022 with workshops to refine her poetry skills, leading to her selection as the Young City Poet. She uses her poetic expressions to motivate others to write, sharing her unique perspective and life encounters through poetry to ensure her voice is heard.

Collaborating with former City Poet Caleb Parkin and fellow young poet, Nara Pring, Altoma has grown in confidence during her time as the Young City Poet. Overcoming initial nerves that posed a challenge, she now aids others in conquering their fears of sharing their poetry by drawing on her experiences to inspire and provide guidance.

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Altoma (L) and Mrs Morgan-Jones (R) - Mrs Morgan Jones was key in helping Altoma realise her dreams of becoming Young City Poet

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Altoma (L) and MHS & V6 Sixth Form Headteacher, Ms Spence

Altoma participated in esteemed events this year, such as the Lyra Poetry Festival and the opening of Bristol Beacon, initially finding the experience daunting but later enjoying the audience's support and well wishes. Altoma expressed gratitude for the kind audiences who acknowledged her nerves, with strangers praising her poetry.

At the Lyra Festival City of Words closing event last week Altoma performed two poems to packed audiences. Her first poem about the fall of the statue of Edward Colston, and her second about how war had tarnished the memory and the present for Sudan. MHS & V6 Sixth Form Headteacher Ms Spence congratulated Altoma's emotional performance that brought the crowd to tears.

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Her inspiration stems from personal encounters, notably ignited by the tragic murder of George Floyd in 2020, prompting her to speak out through poetry. Writing about impactful topics and using poetry as a medium to manage emotions, Altoma said she would love a career centred around poetry writing. While continuing her A Level studies at V6 Sixth Form, Altoma aims to continue her writing and inspiring others to explore poetry writing and performance.