Wednesday, March 30, 2011
This Collection Friendly Slam.
'The holy miraculous difference between firstrate & second implies nonthinkable enormousness by contrast with the tiny stumble from second to tenthrate.' - e.e. cummings.
Aye Eddy, whatever you say son!
The inaugural ThisCollection FRIENDLY POETRY SLAM has been and gone. It was a great success, with consistent quality and entertainment, from a controlled crowd of temporary human beings and poets. It took place in the dark cavernous downstairs bar at The Banshee Labyrinth. It was hosted by the miraculous, relentless labourer of poetry Claire Askew.
1st place went to Young Dawkings: A quality controlled performance of orange juice compact passion. By that I mean, Dawkin's performance contained with the same 'juice' (energy/nuritional value in poetic terms) as a ripe orange. He was sincere, empassioned and caused the hair on my neck to stand on end.
2nd place went to Stephen Welsh: This was his first poetry slam and, I think, his first public reading. He was polished, confident, thoughtful, and gave us a poetic-lecture of the complexity and mystery of the universe.
3rd place went to Chris Lindores: A beardy man of quick wit and self-deprecating humour, and enough dirty realism to undermine the pretense of the far-too-serious of the night.
All three got money and booze and self-satisfaction, and what more deserved than that, on this shorttimespent-planet-earth! Well done to them.
Question: what's the difference between SLAM and a poetry reading? Anwser: SLAM (in this case) is COMPETITIVE, but poetry reading is not. SLAM involves score sheets, ten point scales of content form and delivery. It involves arithmetic/calculators. Time keeping. Stop watches. Shouting, reading, self-doubt, an excess of passion and microphone reverberation. It involves financial incentive and booze promise.
All in all, it was a quality night, and the three winners now get to go to St Andrews and read at an experimental poetry night. So, good luck on that wee poetry galivant. I think there may be more this collection SLAM nights to come. I hope so. Let there be mic!
End note: I came a tight, but not tight enough, 4th which astounded and encouraged me, like a child on stabilisers cycling for the tenth time and not worrying that you'll fall over.