Established 1885

The Washburn Review

Established 1885

The Washburn Review

Established 1885

The Washburn Review

Psychology professor shares her journey as a poet in her new book ‘In the Bodies’

Jericho M. Hockett, associate professor in psychology, holds her new book,”In the Bodies.” She held a poetry reading where she read some poems from the book. (Stuti Khadka)

On Thursday, Feb. 15, Jericho M. Hockett, associate professor in psychology, held a poetry reading for the release of her new book “In The Bodies” in Carole Chapel. The event started at 3 p.m. with over 25 attendees, some being Hockett’s friends and colleagues.

Dennis Etzel Jr., senior lecturer for English, began the event by reading Hockett’s biography.

“I am just so thrilled to be able to have this reading for my colleague, sister, Dr. Jericho,” Etzel said. “She is a social psychologist, teacher, forever student and dreamer most full on the green.”

Hockett started writing poetry when she was little, although she said she wrote poorly then. She came to Washburn a few years after she had been in Topeka and started taking poetry classes in the English department.

“Faculty and staff are very lucky. We get a free class each semester and I started taking poetry classes to refresh and learn new things,” Hockett said.

Hockett began the event by reading “I Fear I was a Werewolf” from her book where she mentioned her relationship with her sister.

“[…] I was trying to understand my relationship with my sister, thinking about how we were the same and how we were different, and trying to integrate those things,” Hockett said.

Hockett introduces each poem through what she was going through at that time and talks about her relationship with friends and family.

Hockett reads her poem in Carole Chapel. The poetry reading lasted from 3-4 p.m. (Stuti Khadka)

“In the Bodies” is a poem collection which is largely about an exploration of identity. Some of the poems in the book were written a decade ago and some of them are from Hockett’s recent projects.

Hockett took poetry writing more seriously once she was five years into her career. She described her relationships with her two daughters in one of her poems, “Blessed be the Girls,” and many more. She described the southwest part of Kansas where she grew up, in her poem, “Kansas Witch.”

Halfway through the reading, Hockett took a pause and read some poems which had not been published yet. She wrote those poems while taking a sabbatical some years ago to spend some time helping students with research methods. Hockett felt she should write poems centered around dealing with anxiety and dread after being around students and seeing how it affects them. She shares her experience on how she came upon writing when she saw how students were dealing with anxiety and dread.

“I wanted to explore why students were feeling so anxious and more importantly how they can use their identities and their sense of belonging in different kinds of communities to help themselves overcome that anxiety,” Hockett said.

After the readings were done, Hockett requested the attendees to participate in writing a poem on the topic “To Be in a Sacred Place is….” Everyone expressed their words on notecards, which were provided by Hockett. She later read the poems as a collaborative poem.

The poetry reading ended at 4 p.m. and copies of the book were provided for book signing.
The book is available to purchase on the Ichabod shop for students who are interested.

Edited by Jeremy Ford and LeSha’ Davis

 

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About the Contributor
Stuti Khadka, Editor
Hey, I am Stuti! I am a freshman psychology and nursing major. I am a copy editor and content creator at Student Media where I write stories on campus events and meet people with their unique life experiences. After graduation, I plan on working in hospitals and contributing myself to the medical community and perhaps someday I hope on publishing my own book filled with small stories.
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