April 23, 2017

Albany WordFest, Tuesday, April 18

The 2nd night of WordFest was the annual Haiku Competition at Nitty Gritty Slam held at The Low Beat on Central Ave. Amani was our host here, as she is each month, setting us up with “poetry is revolutionary.” She did a did an up-beat, strangely new-age-y piece that she said was “from y’all to y’all” titled “Remember Who You Are.”  [Guest commentator, 3B at the bar, had these notes: "Spitting over some John Denver ambient.  Lot of words."]

There was, in addition to the Haiku Slam, an open mic, but I did as I usually do, just signed up for the Slam.

Mariah Barber was the first of the 3 open mic poets, started with a love-fantasy for a rap star, then a happy poem for the happy couples, & a poem for Michael Brown, from her book, Of Mics & Pens & Gods & Other College Courses (self-published thru Create Space, 2017).  [as 3B said, "I feel old; she won't be on Breitbart anytime soon."]

Liv McKee tried out an unedited piece about her family in New Jersey, “Heading South,” written today.

& last was Amanda Boyd with a couple of short pieces inspired by a word-of-the-day app, a poem on “Camber,” & one on “Gumption.”

[3B summed up the the  open mic: "A short & powerful open mic -- Wilcox's favorite words to explain himself."]

There are lots of ways of running a slam for Haiku but the most simple to my mind is to do head-to-head between 2 poets, which is what happened, with right-hand/left-hand scoring. Anyways, it was Amanda & me, then Liv & Mariah, then Liv & Amanda, then me & Mariah, & me & Amanda — there I was once again, as I was last year, the winner, but by only 1 vote, a tight fight. The usual Haiku topics of Nature, but others on women, even on war, & humor & poetry. It was fun & if you know me you know how much I like being with a bunch of women — it was most sweet.

The Nitty Gritty Slam continues each 1st & 3rd Tuesdays at The Low Beat, always an open mic & sometimes a Slam as well. Check the schedule at AlbanyPoets.com. More WordFest each night this week.

No comments: