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No one is alone

Minot writer uses poetry to help others

Submitted Photos Kati Thompson did her makeup for her role as the caretaker’s wife in “House on Haunted Hill.”

Art is about creativity and is not limited to drawing, painting, dancing or singing. Writing is an art in and of itself, and Kati Thompson fell in love with crafting words into poetry.

She came to love writing in 4th grade when her teacher handed out a Halloween-themed writing prompt sheet. All of the students in the class had 10 minutes to write a story about the witches in the prompt. Thompson said she groaned in disapproval when the sheet landed on her desk with the rest of the class. However, when she started writing, she couldn’t stop. She took 20 minutes and three pages, front and back.

“The teacher physically had to make me stop writing,” she said. “I just realized how much fun it was.”

In the rest of her school years, she worked on writing short stories.

“They’re really weird,” she admitted. “They’re very strange.”

One of her short stories was about Schrodinger’s cat, which was an experiment involving quantum physics, a cat, a vial of poison, a radioactive source and a Geiger counter. The story, however, did not involve physics. It was about the cat and the people involved in the experiment. Ultimately, just like in the experiment, the cat dies in the end.

Another short story she described was about a tree that could talk. The tree was a spy for the Fairy Nation and his mission was to collect a 16-year-old-girl. The girl had only 10 years to live and was saying she didn’t want to waste two of her remaining years going back to high school. The tree then gives her the option to either spend eternity in the Fairy Nation and never die, or she could go back to school, live with her mother and have only 10 more years to live. A good portion of the story is the tree and the girl arguing back and forth about what she should do.

Five years ago, Thompson got into poetry when she heard it spoken on stage. The spoken word style of poetry is “a very distinct style” and is anything that can be spoken on stage.

“The poems just came to me and they never stopped,” she said.

As with a lot of younger generations these days, she can type faster than she can write. Instead of writing her poems on paper, she types them into Google Docs.

Google Docs is very helpful for writers who prefer to type their work. It is an online service that can be accessed on any electronic device, whether it be a computer, a tablet or a smartphone. As long as the device has Internet access, documents can be edited from anywhere, including the grocery store.

Thompson said she has gotten in the “zone” at the grocery store and had to write down her idea before the feeling goes away. She bases a lot of her poetry around her depression and anxiety, then posts them on her Facebook page so others can read them.

“I want to reach other people who might need help making their feelings into words,” she explained. “I hope I am able to do that.”

Each poem has a certain “feeling” to it and she writes only one poem at a time. The most poems she’s written in a day is three. Sometimes when she needs a little boost, she uses writing prompt books that she gets at Barnes & Noble.

She’s been trying to work on a series but she said it’s difficult. With her poems having a particular feeling, it would be difficult to give the series the same feeling throughout.

“It’s difficult to get that feeling back if I’ve already written about it and felt it,” she said.

Her style is similar to that of the famous poet that inspires her, Emily Dickinson. The sentences are broken up where the focus where she thinks it should be and one sentence can sometimes take three to four lines.

Thompson has also been part of the Misfits of Minot for two years, and does a little bit of everything. She helps backstage if they need it, she gives them an extra set of hands. Sometimes she takes small roles on stage.

“I leave the big parts to other people,” she said. In the March production of “House on Haunted Hill,” she played the caretaker’s wife and a skeleton toward the end.

For the upcoming virtual variety show the Misfits of Minot will be doing, Thompson is reciting a poem titled “If people were like houses.”

Writing can be a very helpful tool in expressing emotions, connecting to others and telling a story that may be difficult to express without writing it down first. Thompson fell in love with writing 11 years ago and hasn’t been able to stop. The reason for writing may have changed, but her need to write has not.

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