The night on which “Phenomenally” occurred was marked with black suits, poetry readings and a good view of our city. Photos by Cheyanne Wheat

“Phenomenally” a reflective, empowering poetry event

MUSED organization hosted “Phenomenally” with the aim of creating a celebratory venue for women-centric poetry.

On Saturday, January 27, MUSED organization hosted an event called “Phenomenally,” based off the famous poem by Maya Angelou. It was located at The Brooksider on 35th and Peoria, and all proceeds from the event went to the Reverse Selfie Project. The event was to celebrate women’s vigor and beauty, feminism and Nicci Atchley’s birthday.
Nicci Atchley is a writer for “The Tulsa Voice” and a realtor in the community. The pamphlet shared a sweet anecdote from her past, reading, “When Nicci was 18, she read a poem that changed the trajectory of her life — the words ‘I am a woman, phenomenally’ became her mantra. The lines “It’s in the reach of my arms, the span of my hips, the stride of my step” became her marching song.” It gave the event a mission statement with a personal flair.
The Reverse Selfie Project is a six-week workshop hosted by Tulsa Public Schools. The project promotes stepping back from technology and looking within through poetry. Their statement is, “When we are the center of our world we cannot see (or serve) the real world.” The Reverse Selfie Project aims to guide students to be selfless and benevolent human beings, for these types of people will look at the world and try to change it.
Walking into The Brooksider, I was floored. Entering through a seven-foot glass door, I immediately met a friendly doorman and a glowing staircase. At the door, pamphlets and legal pads were handed to the guests. Guests were encouraged to write poems to share at the event. Ladies were asked to write about their younger self, and men were asked to write about a woman who inspires them.
The event was held on the top floor. The room was packed with people in evening gowns, glittery cocktail dresses and pristine suits. To my surprise, the men outnumbered the women. The event had a large selection of sushi rolls and fancy drinks, sponsored by In the Raw and Artisan Fine Wine and Spirits. The stage was placed right in front of the stairs. While no one was speaking, a duet would play their guitar and snare drum and sing sweet, soft songs. I couldn’t find a place to sit so I stood by the stairs most of the event. There was both scheduled and unscheduled poetry readings. It was hard to differentiate the two, but no one seemed to mind. It was captivating hearing what inspires, motivates and empowers. Peering around the room when someone read their work, I saw eyes glistening and lips curled in bliss. It was an intimate yet glamorous event that gave an unparalleled experience to its guests.
“Phenomenally” was a great experience for Tulsa poetry fans. It is important to step back and reflect on life once in a while. I’d like to see the program expand as they gain years behind them. The Brooksider is one of the many gorgeous pieces of architecture Tulsa has to offer. Overall, the event beamed so much with glam, it was almost distracting. It was a great experience to step out of my own element and experience the events hosted by the Tulsa upper-class. Most of all, the poetry was a personal element that cannot be rivaled. It allowed a window into the lives of Tulsans from all backgrounds who care deeply about women and celebrate their success.

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Post Author: Cheyanne Wheat