See you tonight

Since I’ve been getting up early lately it’s been doing all kinds of kooky things with my subconscious. I keep waking up at weird times, 3h00 strikes and my body thinks "you just had an evening nap, time to go back to gaming!". No, I’m getting my measly six hours before I have to get up at 5h00 stupid body.

Last night it was 4h00, but as I awoke I had a memory of a dream. A roomful of students, furiously writing down verses, and nothing was coming for me. One stanza, then nothing. My pencil felt heavy, like a blunt instrument. Then inspiration struck, I tore off my maroon sweater, the one my grandmother knitted for me of which I am so very proud, for which I love so very much, grabbed a pen and starting writing on the sweater itself. Heavy blue ink soaked into the wool, and while I knew I might not be able to read it afterwards, I didn’t care. It was flowing, just straight out of my mind and onto the sweater. I turned it over and kept writing. My partner beside me gets up and reads his solid, applause inducing oeuvre. My turn, I’m trying to read my sweater, it starts out really sappy typical, people laugh, and then the words fade away. I’m crying, shaking, with the need to convey the emotions which produced my work, with which they merged with this token of love I cherish so much, and yet I can’t. I leave shamed and broken, but after the day is done, someone asks me, "You’re coming back tomorrow right?"

Taylor Mali’s what teachers make

Probably his best performance of this poem. I still want to go to the bathroom.

I’m not much of a writer nor do I have a particular affinity for poetry. That said slam poetry seems to have a few qualities that make it a lot more appealing to a general audience, it’s powerful, focuses on emotional impact and if I had to compare it to techno, I’d say it was anthem. Maybe that’s cheap tricks, but I’d prefer to just see it as part of the whole, just one type, and it has it’s place.

5 thoughts on “See you tonight”

  1. I don’t much like (er.. understand? appreciate?) poetry as a genre, but the high end of slam poetry is often quite stirring. The best that I’ve heard includes breaks into actual song. Poetry on a page just can’t compare to the rich sound of a black woman’s voice (the first slam poet I heard), with all of her emotional strength pouring through it.

    I haven’t seen it combined with such comedy before, and I have to say that was quite effective. It reminded me to look up Dennis Lee, the author of children’s poetry books such as Alligator Pie and Garbage Delight. Another rare example of poetry worth experiencing.

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