Poetry. As a former High School English teacher, I can attest to the many moans and groans echoing through the air whenever the word is mentioned. However, San Antonio’s Poet Laureate, Andrea “Vocab” Sanderson is changing the face of poetry: enthralling us with her words, engaging us with her presence, revolutionizing the experience. Her album “She Tastes Like Music” is an artistic, poetic expression of everything that encompasses who she is.
Sanderson began her journey with poetry and music in high school. In 2001, she would attend and participate in open mic nights. In 2004, she was introduced to Slam Poetry by San Antonio poets Amalia Ortiz and Anthony Flores. By 2005, Sanderson made her first Slam team, and by 2006, she was hosting her own open mic nights. Fast forward to 2021, She is now co-hosting an open mic spot called 2nd Verse, which will start up soon as it was put on hold due to the pandemic. Be that as it may, a “Global pandemic will not stop my will to do poetry,” Sanderson states matter of factly. She likens herself to Juggernaut, being the X-Men fan that she is, “Once he gets going and he gets momentum, nothing can stop him. And he gets faster and stronger the more he goes. So I feel like that’s what we have to do. We have to get this momentum going and just plow through.” Sanderson also states that we must take a break, pray, cry, tell our friends about our struggles, then get our butts up again and Get Going!
When asked what it feels like to be the first Black woman Poet Laureate of San Antonio, Sandersoon had this to say, “ I’m a Civil Rights leader, even when I don’t want to be.” She speaks for women of color everywhere. Like Amanda Gorman National Youth Poet Laureate, Sanderson’s poems are also new sermons and prophetic for a hopeful future.
Leaving us with these guiding words, “Every little idea you have could possibly lead to something amazing, your Eureka moment…you need to document these things,” whether these ideas come to you when you are driving or dreaming, be sure to write them down, and never throw them away. You never know when and where each season will take you. Listen to your spirit.