Canton Church's Poetry and Spirituality Group Has Soul
Community members gather to discuss prose and spirituality at First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church in Canton.
Mary Oliver, Giacomo Leopardi, May Sarton and Emily Dickenson are but a few of the inspired poets whose works are discussed at the Poetry and Spirituality Group at First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church in Canton. An average of 10 men and women of diverse ages, beliefs and backgrounds gather together on a monthly basis to enjoy poetry readings along with a cup of coffee and the company of one another.
The group was just recently formed in November of 2010. Poems of all themes and genres are shared during the hour-long meeting; group leader Louise LaFontaine generally begins the time by sharing a poem, about which those in attendance then provide comments, thoughts and memories.
Norwood resident Geppe Bisaccia, a native of Italy, described the gathering as a time during which all are invited to share "feelings that the pieces evoke," and explained that the main agenda is to focus on individual emotional resonance with each poem rather than intellectual analysis. Bisaccia most recently shared a piece originally penned in Italian and shared both true and translated versions.
Each person who attends has his or her own personal interest in poetry. First-timer Peter Lynch finds general beauty in poetic prose because it "plants the seed of an idea and shakes up the way I think about things." LaFontaine's son, teacher David LaFontaine, commented on his view that today's educational system too often leads students to "seek answers rather than allowing meaning to develop," concluding that "poetry defies that." Many in the group attend because their love of music, and the connection between music and prose, has drawn them in with the opportunity of exploring poetry more deeply.
Visitors are welcome to join and bring a selection along, whether somber or upbeat, cheerful or reflective, well-known or nearly unheard of. The group will gather next on January 9, 2011, after the bustle of the holiday season is through. Newcomers can find the group in the church's chapel and are also invited to attend the church service beforehand at 10:30 a.m. or the coffee hour at 11:30 a.m.