The Spanish Department and the Sociedad de Profesores Hispanos held an in-class session of Spanish poetry readings on April 20 in the Liberal Arts building.
The session, entitled “Peña de Poesía en Español” is an hour and a half long session that is usually held twice a month. Here, students as well as professors are given the opportunity to read poetry by some of their favorite poets, as well as read some of their own original poems.
Ricardo Valdez also accompanied each reader with his guitar, by playing soft music during each reading.
Professor Walter Fernandez hosted the session, and says these sessions are one of his favorite things to do here at Cerritos.
“I enjoy these Spanish poetry sessions because I feel it is necessary to have events like these.” he said, “Sixty percent of Cerritos College is latino. I feel it is important to have things in an intellectual environment like this that everyone can enjoy.”
Each reader was given about five minutes to read poems in spanish and then translated them into english. Poems ranged from controversial and revolutionary subjects, to poems about love and heartbreak.
Two published poets in the Spanish Department, Professors Froylán Cabuto and Jennie Jaime, also participated in this annual event, as did Professor Frank Gaik, who entertained everyone with his hilarious take on a poem entitled “El Cucuy.”
All the students who read poems aloud volunteered to do so. The turnout led Fernandez to believe that there is interest among some students at Cerritos to have events like these more than just once a year.
“We’ve been doing these readings for about four years now.” he said. “We, meaning the Sociedad de Profesores Hispanos, would like to see students work with us and other faculty members to promote reading sessions, be it poetry or short stories.”