Island Poets to Feature ACLC’s Mighty Pens

Island Poets to Feature ACLC’s Mighty Pens

The Mighty Pens, the student poetry club from Alameda Community Learning Center (ACLC) will be the focus of the monthly Alameda Island Poets reading set for Wed., May 2, at 7 p.m.

In 2012, with the hope of sharing a lifelong love of poetry and the exquisite beauty of words, Cathy Dana, teacher of creative expressions at the charter school, founded the school-wide poetry club called The Mighty Pens. The group meets weekly to write and share poetry, culminating each year in a book of student poems, entitled Wandering Minds, Dancing Words.

Ivy Nebeker, student editor of this year’s book says it represents the poetry of 25 students. Nina Lovejoy designed the cover art and the overall publication was designed by graphic artist Izzy Penston. Copies of Wandering Minds will be on sale at the reading.

Dana, current Alameda Poet Laureate, also established a student poet laureate program at ACLC. Current ACLC Poets Laureate are Truly Edison and Tay Lew. Each week, the Mighty Pens choose a “poet of the week” to read a poem to the entire school. Students have read poetry at Berkeley’s Poetry Express, ACLC Multicultural Night, Books, Inc., the Ina Coolbrith Circle and the Dancing Poetry Festival at the Palace of the Legion of Honor.

Here is a sample poem from Wandering Minds by Liam Foster.

The Ocean Depths
I live in a little house on an island in a great black sea.
Every night, I dive into the inky darkness beneath the stars.
I search for the dim lights of the fallen, like dying quasars.
I know not where they come from, nor where they go.
But I bring them to shore, solid rock and a warm glow.
That’s enough for me.

Alameda Island Poets meets monthly at the Frank Bette Center for the Arts at 1601 Paru St. Nanette Deetz hosts the reading and light refreshments are served by donation. An open mic follows the featured readers. 

For more information contact Dana at 205-2375 or visit