By Erika Moreno / Delta Staff Writer
Jazmin Perez is an aspiring writer who started writing poetry in Spanish before she transitioned into English to find a wider audience.
Writing has always been a very big outlet for Perez, but when she arrived at Missouri Valley College, one of her professors was really excited about the things that she was writing.
Before, she would have thought that she was being self-centered when she thought her work was good. However, having a professor, someone with knowledge of what they are doing and experience in the field, praise her work made her think that maybe her work is actually good.
Perez said that she gets inspired by anything really. She is the type of person to take a walk in the middle of the night and see two trees next to each other and then a lightbulb will turn on in her head and she will write a poem about it.
Her work usually revolves around mental health, family issues, financial issues, relationships, music and art. If she sees a painting that she can’t seem to stop thinking about then she’ll write about it. When she hears a song and a word really sticks out to her, she’ll fixate on that word and write whatever that word inspires her to write.
Perez writes a lot of poems, but she doesn’t title them. She said this is because she doesn’t like permanently putting something on her writing because it gives her anxiety. This segues into the other reason why she doesn’t and it’s because she feels like although she may be writing about her mother that writing that she just did can portray someone else for the reader.
She wants to be a professor because she feels that a lot of times students don’t like writing or learning about writing. Perez wants to change the way that teachers teach English and make it more modern.
She didn’t grow up studying poetry or poets; she would study music and rappers. She believes that using methods like the way the rappers would write is how she can make it more modern.
“There’s no such thing as good or bad in art,” Perez said. “It’s just if it makes you feel something that’s good weather makes you feel angry sad happy then it is good writing.”
Janie Morgan is the Dance Professor at Missouri Valley College and she is currently collaborating with Perez because she felt so impressed with Perez’s work at the Research Symposium a few years ago.
A poem of Perez’s really stuck out to Morgan. All of Perez’s works are “untitled” however there was one poem in particular that she remembered and it was about being judged and making assumptions about people, based off of experience from others.
Morgan remembered the ending was really powerful. She asked her to share that poem with her, and she started following her on her instagram page “Busboy Poetry.”
“I’m a big fan,” Morgan said. “Her writing is dark yet beautiful, intelligent, poignant, subtle yet bold.”
They have currently been having conversations with the dancers, together, and they are working on various poems for a show that is to come out the week of Veterans Day.
“It’s been great, and easy,” Morgan said. “Writing appears to come easy to her but I know if that is true. She’s been quick to write new material for us and excited to have her presence in the space when we are working.”
Lauryn Craine watched Perez when she did the research symposium last year. Craine said that Perez’s poems are very emotional.
Professor Claire Schmidt met Perez in creative writing.
“The minute that I read the first poem of hers that I saw, I knew that she was doing work that was really important and really beautiful,” Schmidt said “Her writing has so much depth, so much empathy, and fierceness at the same time.”
Schmidt said Perez’s writing showed such an understanding of the personal experiences and so much understanding of the experiences of others and was able to communicate that experience to someone else to a stranger so her words on the page were able to bring a vision into life.
“I knew immediately that she was a serious writer; a serious poet who not only had skill with words but had something to say had a need to tell a story and to paint pictures,” Schmidt said.