Thunderclap

Author Topic: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?  (Read 9741 times)

MattMason

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 304
    • View Profile
    • http://matt.midverse.com
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #15 on: June 02, 2009, 08:08:11 PM »
We all have 'em. The trick is to have 'em be more original than someone else's.


Amen, Steve, that is the goal!
-------------------------------------------
See more Nebraska Poetry info at: www.poetrymenu.com
And Omaha Slam info at: www.OmahaSlam.com
And Matt Mason whatever at: matt.midverse.com

Tracy Townsend

  • Limerick
  • **
  • Posts: 75
    • View Profile
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #16 on: June 02, 2009, 09:20:27 PM »
My personal 'favorite' is the poems pimping someone else's pain - this sorta spans many of the other categories.
Those poems where somewhere the poet says something like 'I feel I need to let the world know about this person's story.'

Cool, do that - just not for points.
 
Also, really really really tired of hearing what poets here call 'Those goddam baby-raping poems' from the pain-pimping poets. Rape, molestation and incest survivors can usually tell if the poet knows this pain or not. If it's the poet's own pain, well then they've earned the right to talk and write about it - hopefully in an original & thought-provoking way, not mind-numbing. If it isn't the poet's own pain, well, you will usually see the back of a few okc poet's heads as they are walking out the door during the poem.

Lovin the bingo cards. I've given them to newbies here & it really helps to keep them fresh and also helps separate their style from what I call, 'The YouTube Effect' where they watch the poets they love over & over & eventually start sounding too much like their favorite poets.

PS I don't think my poor attempt at bingo sheets could even come close to the magic of yours, Gabrielle

A poet is, before anything else, a person who is passionately in love with language.
W. H. Auden

Delrica

  • Epic
  • *****
  • Posts: 5492
  • Follicles, mayne!
    • View Profile
    • http://www.4luvofpoetry.com
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2009, 06:05:07 AM »
Something else to keep in mind, TS (hi there buddeh!):

These poems not only run rampant in SLAM proper, but in any open mic any day of the week.

To say these forms are "slam" poems, makes slam an independent art form and we wouldn't want that now would we? :P

Also...to limit this JUST to slam means we have to come up with a new list for open mics/spoken word that doesn't include competition and then we have a whole OTHER debate to do (yes...this is my attempt at sarcasm...true but still sarcastic).

The "pimpin other people's pain" one? I like that.  I know that when I first started hearing spoken word artists say "true story" before performing a piece, I would get confused. Then I got annoyed because some of the other things the poet would perform were just as riveting and I felt it took away the value of the work as a whole by indicating what was or wasn't true.

Every story is a true story.  Maybe not for the writer performing, but it is true for someone; maybe even the someone listening in the audience that night that needed to hear it so they realize they're not alone.

just sayin...
*The views expressed by Delrica are not that of PSi nor the Executive Council. Her gems are her own...deal with it*

TSPrunier

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myspace.com/slamrichmond
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #18 on: June 07, 2009, 01:36:19 AM »
i think my favourite type of slam poem -- and by this i mean my favourite to hate on -- is the poem that tells you all about all the things the write WANTS his/her poem to do, thus underlining everything the poet CAN'T do with his/her poetry.

it's much easier to say "i want to write a poem that blows your house down like a hurricane of words and phrases" than to actually WRITE a poem that can actually DO that.

"i don't want to be a slam poet... i want to write poems that slam."

sigh.
Nail, meet head of hammer. Hammer, this is nail. Now play.

TSPrunier

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myspace.com/slamrichmond
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #19 on: June 07, 2009, 01:39:59 AM »
This is all..

Why I consider maintaining the bingo sheet (not like I'm the only one that can or *should*) an act of service to the community. I used to hand it to my newbie team and say, it's not the end of the world if you have poems like this in your set. But this will tell you we HAVE heard them before, so you better be DAMNED original.

PS. Other people can/should come up with other bingo lists. Just sayin'.

Never saw the bingo sheet. I work hard to stay off it *most of the time*.

TSPrunier

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myspace.com/slamrichmond
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #20 on: June 07, 2009, 01:52:45 AM »
... and also helps separate their style from what I call, 'The YouTube Effect' where they watch the poets they love over & over & eventually start sounding too much like their favorite poets.

I was at a slam venue this past week and saw two poets imitating (1) Anis/Buddy and (2) Ed Mabrey. It was frustrating and took away from the content of their poem. Granted, the content of their work was their own, but the delivery was spot-on imitations, kind of like the Saul Williams clones through the early 2000s.

I can understand when you're influenced by a writer or performer, but when every single poem you do sounds like ONE poet, even you should be getting bored with it. It's like the reference earlier to people saying "metaphor" and "simile" and cannot distinguish between the two. Frustrating.

Just started reading Susan B. Anthony Somers-Willet's book, The Cultural Politics of Slam Poetry, and it opens with a short history of slam, what it stands for, how it's accessible, etc. I wish it were still wide open and less about winning. Some days, it is just that; often with younger poets, it's about imitating, copy-pasting, etc. The rare original poet is a gift to the art form.

Kinda why I was asking about what people think the common types of poems are out there. Maybe S.B.A.S-W covers it in her book.

TSPrunier

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myspace.com/slamrichmond
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #21 on: June 07, 2009, 02:03:55 AM »
Something else to keep in mind, TS (hi there buddeh!):

Hey there!

These poems not only run rampant in SLAM proper, but in any open mic any day of the week.

To say these forms are "slam" poems, makes slam an independent art form and we wouldn't want that now would we? :P

Also...to limit this JUST to slam means we have to come up with a new list for open mics/spoken word that doesn't include competition and then we have a whole OTHER debate to do (yes...this is my attempt at sarcasm...true but still sarcastic).

True, so it should be spoken word, not just slam. But on open mic, you do have those moments of originality, as well as those droning books that the host must uncomfortably remove from the stage.

The "pimpin other people's pain" one? I like that.  I know that when I first started hearing spoken word artists say "true story" before performing a piece, I would get confused. Then I got annoyed because some of the other things the poet would perform were just as riveting and I felt it took away the value of the work as a whole by indicating what was or wasn't true.

Every story is a true story.  Maybe not for the writer performing, but it is true for someone; maybe even the someone listening in the audience that night that needed to hear it so they realize they're not alone.

just sayin...

Yeah, agree here. A good poet can tell someone else's story, and there's nothing wrong with that if they're not claiming it as their own. The point is to connect with the audience.

To the person who noted earlier that incest/rape survivors can tell if the poet truly understands the experience, I'm with you; too many try to delve into those waters without being touched by this crime. I tread carefully in this space because several close friends are victims, but I am not. I know more than I want to about the experience, including the psychological and physical ripple effects that last an entire life.

Either way, I love a good night a poetry, and am willing to suffer a few three-minute annoyances if the overall night is good.

Ransacked

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 237
    • View Profile
    • Aliens Ransacked my Room
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #22 on: June 10, 2009, 11:54:53 AM »
I'd chime in with four other genres of open mic and/or slam poems:

1. The "I just wrote this during the open mic" poem.  Also known as the "Hey, everybody listen to me, even though I clearly wasn't listening to everybody" poem.

2. The "I really thought I had this memorized" poem.  (I have, on occasion, been guilty of this poem.)

3. The "I'm from out of town and time limits don't apply to me, because I'm from out of town, and because I Got Something I Need To Say, and because I got here a little late and missed the memo about how we only get three minutes of mic time, plus here's some back story involving out-of-town characters you couldn't care less about" poem.

4. The "Where the hell did that come from?" poem. When a long-time listener, first-time reader steps up and just floors you, or when a regular who has been phoning it in steps way outside his/her usual fare and just knocks one into the parking lot.  This genre is my favorite.



Also, really really really tired of hearing what poets here call 'Those goddam baby-raping poems' from the pain-pimping poets. Rape, molestation and incest survivors can usually tell if the poet knows this pain or not. If it's the poet's own pain, well then they've earned the right to talk and write about it - hopefully in an original & thought-provoking way, not mind-numbing. If it isn't the poet's own pain, well, you will usually see the back of a few okc poet's heads as they are walking out the door during the poem.

I would hope that the mind-numbing quality of those poems results from flaws in the writing or performance, not from the device of borrowing someone else's story, or inventing that story entirely.  I feel the ability to write about pain anything "in an original & thought-provoking way" proves the poet has "earned the right to talk and write about it."  If you can write well on the subject, the subject is yours for the taking.  I care little, if at all, for a poet's autobiography. 


Every story is a true story.  Maybe not for the writer performing, but it is true for someone; maybe even the someone listening in the audience that night that needed to hear it so they realize they're not alone.

Amen.

TSPrunier

  • Sonnet
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myspace.com/slamrichmond
Re: SURVEY: What are the (x) different types of slam poems?
« Reply #23 on: June 15, 2009, 01:01:41 AM »

4. The "Where the hell did that come from?" poem. When a long-time listener, first-time reader steps up and just floors you, or when a regular who has been phoning it in steps way outside his/her usual fare and just knocks one into the parking lot.  This genre is my favorite.

My favorite genre too. Wish it would happen more often.