Poetry slam set for March 16 at Mary’s Place

“Do not commit your poems to the page alone. Sing them, I pray you.”—Virgil

It is amazing what a man has the ability to do with words. A poetry slam is a poetry performance competition where poets are scored based on content and delivery.

This is not your grandmother’s poetry, so if you’re imagining what looks like a quilting circle calmly reciting poems to one another, head on down to Mary’s Place on North Madison for a mental adjustment.

Each poet that signs up to take a turn gets three minutes to convince random audience-members-turned-judges-for-the-evening that this poem is the one to represent Rockford’s silver tongue-reinforced banks.

Poets, without the aid of any costumes, props, or musical accompaniment, are competing for the opportunity to have their words represent Rockford at the National Poetry Slam in Austin, Texas.

Last year, Rockford sent four poets to Albuquerque, N.M. Your 2005 Slam team members are Debra Jo Howard, Molly Fleming, Bear Wolf and Cullen Balch. All of these poets appear regularly at Mary’s Place, and some are pursuing a spot on this year’s team. You can learn more about the National Poetry Slam at www.poetryslam.com.

If you want to spit verbal venom, unleash the scribe inside you, or poetically get some stuff off your chest, come down to the Third Thursday (March 16) Poetry Slam. If you like Def Poetry Jam, want to witness the preservation of the oral tradition, be educated or enlightened by the musings of the honest hearted, or just plain want to have a good time with poetry, come on down to Mary’s Place the third Thursday of the month.

Mary’s Place is at 602 N. Madison St., Rockford. Sign-up starts at 8:30 p.m., Thursday, March 16.

From the March 15-21, 2006, issue

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