Throughout 2021 Philadelphia Poet Laureate Trapeta B. Mayson held poetry workshops with East and West Kensington residents, elementary school students, and individuals impacted by substance use and housing insecurity to reflect on daily life in Kensington. These workshops used poetry as a way to re envision community and imagine new pathways to healing. Curated by Ryan Strand Greenberg, Kensington Healing Verse is an evolution of Mayson’s 2020-2021 Philadelphia Poet Laureate project, Healing Verse Philly Poetry Line.
The participant’s writing captures memories, challenges, and aspirations of daily life in Kensington. These poems were combined into a singular group poem reflecting a shared vision for community and healing. This poem, entitled “our story of us”, was transformed into a neon sign and lifted to the rooftop of 2400 Kensington Avenue to serve as a beacon of strength, hope, and healing for the residents of Kensington.