Six year old poet

ORANJESTAD - I have always said if my pieces do not touch anyone I won't quit writing but I will stop publishing. That's kind of a safe bet because there must be some soul wandering around with the same questions I try to find answers to through my poetry, right? But I never expected one of those souls to be a six year old.

Six year old Kynally Raaz has been studying some of my pieces by watching my videos and reading my books. Her mother told me she walks around reciting my poems to family members and knows many of them by heart. Whenever she has a minute, she grabs her Ipad or her mother's phone to 'sing' with me. Those who know me are familiar with my jealousy of singers as I always said I believe music is a more effective way of communicating a message than poetry. I smiled when I learned she was calling my poems songs.

When Kynally sent me a video of her reciting my latest piece #Hende, I was so blown away by her delivery that I asked her mother's permission to share the video on my social media pages. Like me, many were fascinated by her skills, including the organizers of Aruba Art Fair. They sent me a message asking whether I could perform #Hende at their launch event and if I could bring Kynally with me.

Just received this video from who I am told is my biggest fan, reciting my latest poem #Hende. I have expressed my jealousy of singers on numerous occasions as I believe songs are catchier and an easier way to spread a message than poetry. Would like to thank this 6-year old girl as she might have just proved me wrong. Shout out to Kynally Raaz and her mom Joally Tromp #MiTaClaPawe #PunchMiOut #FelizWeekend#Hende: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PeCDsqNp7nA

Posted by Rosabelle Chuchi Illes on Friday, June 17, 2016

In the video, Kynally is in the comfort of her living room, I wasn't sure how she would handle a crowd or if she would even say yes to this request. I sent her a voicenote to see how she felt about it, to which she replied "Bon tardi Chuchi, mi ta ON, djis bisa mi kico mi tincu haci" (Good afternoon Chuchi, I am ON, just tell me what I have to do). We didn't have much time to rehearse so I visited her for two evenings and spent about 30 minutes going over the piece. I divided the poem where we would each alternate between reciting one sentence of the poem. I was quickly convinced that I do not have much to teach this kid. She is the type of person who will listen to you but do what she feels is best, I guess in that sense I can already call her an artist.

When I arrived at the event in San Nicolas, Kynally was already expecting me. She was eager to get on stage and was asking when it was our turn. When they called us up I asked her whether she was nervous. She said no. I told her I was. After we recited the piece the crowd and the next performer, Aruban singer Zyon, who was holding a mic asked us to repeat it. By then many people took out their phones to record it. Aruban photographer Michael-Anthony Fowler captured it best, check it out:

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