GPS Hosts Literary Magazine Launch Party

By Maggie Parsley '21
Students, faculty, and guests gather in The Ben to celebrate release of Calliope.
In 2016 a GPS student proposed the idea of a literary magazine—a publication whose purpose was to make student voices heard in new ways. That same year Calliope was born. Now with its fourth annual issue, the magazine has moved beyond its tentative beginnings.

Named for the Greek muse of poetry, Calliope is comprised of student art and writing, including original poems and short prose pieces. As a student-run publication, Upper School girls apply for the position of editor, which entails reviewing all submissions and deciding which will make the final edition. This year Isabelle Torrence '20 served as editor-in-chief. 

On Friday, May 3, Calliope editors held a showcase to celebrate the release of this year’s magazine, which includes pieces on a number of topics, ranging from sisterly love to celebrations of culture and heritage. It also features a poem by freshman Abbie Reel, written in memory of her sister, Aubrey “Bob” Dylan Reel.

At the showcase event, 10 girls read unique and thought-provoking pieces to an audience of some 60 attendees. “Reading your own work aloud requires a great deal of courage, but it’s important to give space to creative expression,” says Corrie White, Calliope sponsor and English teacher.

“It’s a scary thing to do, because it feels so vulnerable,” she adds. “But it brings people together and makes them feel more understood. It helps people to feel more connected.”

An intermission was held after the first five readings, during which girls played the guitar and sang and guests were invited to view a gallery of student art. Free printed copies of the magazine were also available.

“The great thing about publishing work is that it becomes the reader’s," says White. “It’s no longer yours in that it forces you to let go and allow your audience to interpret your work for themselves.”

From the impressive turnout of GPS and McCallie students to the responses to the readings and music, the Calliope showcase was a valuable experience for readers and listeners alike.