Poetry and music complemented each other Monday night at the Wellspring Literary Series.
Detroit poet Jamie Thomas, author of “Etch and Blur,” along with Central Michigan University graduate and Master of Arts canidate Sonya Pouncy shared their work at the latest installment of the series at Art Reach, 111 E. Broadway St.
Pouncy, who read from her current series of poems about the life of cancer victim and medical marvel Henrietta Lacks, said music and poetry complement each other.
“I think all art is an interpretation of our reality,” Pouncy said. “Art is like one large mirror with many different facets, each facet representing a different but related art form such as poetry, music or visual art.”
The series has a history of bringing musicians and poets together to share their art under one roof, and veteran performer and CMU music professor Alexandra Mascolo-David attributed that concept to her recurring visits.
“It’s exactly the idea of collaborating with another art form,” the Portuguese pianist said. “We are all creating, and I believe that really is the essence of who we are as human beings.”
Mascolo-David expressed the importance of creativity in music and art and how it allows the artist or musician to better convey their work to others.
“The most rewarding aspect of the creative process for me is the incredible freedom of expression that it provides,” she said. “The creative process validates my whole existence.”
Throughout the evening, Mascolo-David performed six short musical compositions by Erik Sati, a French composer. These pieces were chosen, Mascolo-David said, because of their similarity to poetry.
“They both have rhythm,” she said. “They both have melody.”
Thomas, also a musician, said he uses music as his inspiration for writing almost more than reading the work of other poets.
“I have poems that have been directly inspired by musicians and songs,” Thomas said.
The other Wellspring performers echoed these thoughts, reaffirming the idea that music and poetry are more similar than singular.
Thomas also echoed Mascolo-David’s sentiments about the close relationship between music and poetry.
“Obviously, once upon a time, (music and poetry) were more than related,” he said. “Maybe it’s that they don’t compete.”
The Wellspring Literary Series will return April 8 featuring Perry Senior Courtney Kalmbach and CMU alumnus Brian McAttee, with a musical performance from Daryll and the Beans.