Posts Tagged ‘slam poetry’

Thursday’s Poetry Slam

Today’s poetry slam performance comes from slampapi, the founder of poetry slams himself, Marc Smith.  This website is too good for you to pass up.  Enjoy!  What are your observations and thoughts on his choice of poem, voice, and gestures?

Poem for Poetry Slam

Oh yes, I will perform a poem for you.  I’ll do mine the day before the competitions as an example.  (See, I don’t ask you to do things I am not willing to do myself.) 

Once you choose your poem, type up a performance copy (18 pt font size, 1 1/2 line spacing–easy to read), and then blog about it.  In your post, tell the title of the poem and who wrote.  Then explain why you chose it.  What does this poem mean to you?  Here is what mine looks like.

I chose to perform a poem I wrote myself several years ago called “Sestina for Eighth Graders.”  A sestina is a type of poem based on six repeating words.  The same six words end each line in six six-line stanzas plus an ending three-line stanza.  If you want to make your brain hurt, I’ll give you the format a sestina follows.  One year I had students who drove me crazy.  I started making a list of all the crazy things they did through the year.  The list in my notebook became a running joke.  Students wanted to know if they made the list or how many times they made the list.  At the end of the year, I took the list and wrote a poem.  I’ve read (but not slammed) this poem every year, and every year my students think it’s about them.  I’m looking forward to seeing your reaction to it.

A Possiblilty of a Poem

For those of you still looking for a poem, you might check out this poem, Some Me of Beauty by Carolyn M. Rogers.   Laurie Halse Anderson shared it on her blog today.  (She has lots of other cool links today–from Beverly Cleary to awards for Chains and Wintergirls).  I have to agree with her assessment that this poem gives me chills.  I mean that in an entirely good way.  When I read a good poem, it gives me goosebumps and echoes around in my mind long after I read it.  That’s the kind of poem you are looking for to perform in our poetry slam.  Which words make your soul sing?  Give you goosebumps?  Make you sit up a little straighter and face the world head on.  That’s what good poetry can do.