This the Common Air That Bathes Us

That’s what she said.

That’s what he said.

That’s what she, he, you, me, we said.

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Said it to each other

Said it across long distance phone calls

and short distance pillow talks.

Said it to the mirror,

probably not often enough.

Said it to dogs in high-pitched voices,

and, in face licks and tail wags,

definitely had it returned

in ways other than words.

Said it on accident.

Said it too soon.

Said it too late.

Said it amidst arguments

that were never worth having.

Said it during love making

which was definitely worth having.

Said it to unborn children

Said it quietly over the graves of those now gone.

Said it to our parents

Said it to our parents exponentially more frequently

when we were low on cash.

Said it to the sky.

Said it to the stars.

Said it late at night

to new friends in old bars.

Said it in too many languages to count.

Said it soft,

then said it loud,

then said it louder,

and when it still wasn’t said loud enough

we created a Facebook event page

and invited everyone

so that we could all set our clocks just right

and simultaneously say it at the same time,

and after we did,

the earth grew a little quieter,

see, somehow we all collectively decided,

that anything that was ever worth saying,

had already been said.

I love you.


 

This the Common Air That Bathes Us

What the Dead Know By Heart

lately, when asked how are you, i
respond with a name no longer living

Rekia, Jamar, Sandra

i am alive by luck at this point. i wonder
often: if the gun that will unmake me
is yet made, what white birth

will bury me, how many bullets, like a
flock of blue jays, will come carry my black
to its final bed, which photo will be used

to water down my blood. today i did
not die and there is no god or law to
thank. the bullet missed my head

and landed in another. today, i passed
a mirror and did not see a body, instead
a suggestion, a debate, a blank

post-it note there looking back. i
haven’t enough room to both rage and
weep. i go to cry and each tear turns

to steam. I say I matter and a ghost
white hand appears over my mouth.

— Dante Collins, What the Dead Know By Heart

What the Dead Know By Heart

Where Does Slam Go From Here?

Click here to read the full post.

Poetry would improve if it was not an option to tour for a living, if poets didn’t consider “slam poet” as an encompassing identity, and if being part of a clique was considered less important than producing beautiful work. We need to worry less about feelings and more about craft. If only poets realized that slam is a tiny, tiny pond, that being a big fish in it is absolutely meaningless.
—Alvin Lau

Where Does Slam Go From Here?

Untitled Thirty-seven

God made humans because he was lonely. If I were him, I wouldn’t mind the solitude.

You see us humans can be rather noisy sometimes. I wonder how does he get all

His work done in the midst of distractions. Okay, sure, he has angels and what not maybe

that’s why everyone is going in. Maybe God needs more helping hands for what’s going

on. If the folks that went in didn’t go to Hell first. But people change, I wonder if they

do after Death comes for them. You never know, I mean God you know what they say

right? Beggars can’t be choosers.

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Me Performing

 

This was my first feature, and I was so nervous my mouth went dry but I kept going. Seeing how tough the judges were made me even more nervous– don’t know why since I wasn’t competing but still…it was a rush.  I think with more practice I’ll be even great. This was filmed by Erik Hoeppler.

Video

Manic Pixie Nightmare

The best thing he did as the word spilled from his fingers and made its way across my computer screen was to call me a “cunt.” Why thank you, dear sir, for not calling me a “bitch” I’m glad you know the difference between a female dog and a human being that happened to born with a vagina, but you probably think we’re one in the same.

I’m sorry, I didn’t know I was borrowing your ego, last time I checked I wasn’t inclined to talk to you. You seemed to be under the delusion that I owed you my time. I’m sorry I don’t have any cookies to spare for your bruised arrogance, maybe your parents wouldn’t mind giving you a treat, just like they forgot to teach you a little thing called respect…

Sorry, not really sorry Sour Puss, to inform you that I’m not a candy machine where you can insert your superiority and take your pick for the liking when and how you want! I am not your girl next door, your definition of “someone who is different than the rest” and I’m damn sure not your Juliet to your Romeo.

It’s obvious you can’t handle any of my “no’s” what makes you think I’d put in my time were you’ll get me to say “yes.” Never did it ever occur to you that this “cunt” is trying to stay of afloat in a game called capitalism, working two jobs only to make 63% compared to men and the majority;

going to school drowning in my own hungry dedication for more just so I won’t have to work two jobs, trying to help my family. No, it didn’t occur to you that maybe I’m too fucking tired to talk because your whole life you’ve been invalidating a woman saying no.  I’m not one of the girls that’ll give you a free pass to disrespect me!

Trust and believe, messing with me is like challenging God! You will lose.Did you forget, even Adam had to leave the Garden of Eden with Eve by his side? Dear sir, oh I mean keyboard warrior, do tell how you’re better than me; but take note: Eden isn’t the only place you can get expelled from.

— To’Wednesday Sibley, Manic Pixie Nightmare 

Manic Pixie Nightmare

Why ‘Slam Poetry’ Is Not a Genre

Also, I came across this article written by Chris Gilpin so y’all should definitely check that out as well.

Katie Ailes

My last post responded to the way media sources were misconstruing Sarah Palin’s endorsement speech for Donald Trump as “slam poetry.” I gave several reasons why I consider that use of that term to be inaccurate and rather rude, including that the use of ‘slam poetry’ as shorthand for rambling, incoherent utterances misrepresents a field of poetry generally characterised by tight performances and accessibility. One of the primary reasons I was frustrated with the way this term was used, though, is that ‘slam poetry’ is not a valid term, because it cannot accurate describe an artistic genre. In this post I argue that ‘slam poetry’ as a genre in and of itself does not exist, and suggest some other terminology which more accurately reflects the field of contemporary performance poetry. More after the jump!

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Why ‘Slam Poetry’ Is Not a Genre

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 For Brittany Hutchinson

You saw through my sash and crown, a broken shard of
caked makeup
this…fucking beauty pageant queen! You took my sharp
tongue that many
cower under and called bullshit. I guess pain recognized
pain. Yet you still
found the beauty in the worst of humanity. I still wonder
how you see the beauty in me.

— To’Wednesday M. Sibley, Untitled One

Untitled One