On Friday January 14th, poets, critics, and cafe goers alike joined together at The Coffee Connection (1588 South State Street) for the second organized Poetry Slam. Snapping fingers applauded favored lines and the smell of coffee was heavy in the air. It is an atmosphere some may only believe exists in movies, but Eric Hunter argues this is not the case.
“Poetry slams aren’t dead, they are just hidden,” Hunter said. He explains that students should expose themselves to poetry for an opportunity to reflect upon themselves and bring new thinking to the table. Poetry is as diverse as the vast community of SLCC students. This is the second Slam Hunter has organized and he plans to oversee many in the future.
“It is not just poetic structure that speaks to you. It is the ability to expose something ordinary into being fresh and new,” Hunter added.
William Bissic, also known as MC PROTOTYPE, takes the stage, joining the slam from California. He is one traveling performer the Slam will never forget. His piece took form in spoken word, as he shared words from personal experience. His poem entitled Words Unsaid boasts the words, “I wanted to tell him that I was hurting, too. But I didn’t. See, we haven’t spoken in years. He is my little brother yet we haven’t spoken in years. He was my best friend. Our mother just died, and he never say my tears.”
Also participating in the poetry slam is poet and songwriter Adam Love. Adam has been writing since age 17. When questioned on inspiration regarding his work, he expressed that he learns the most by listening to other poets and how they present their work. Love is a freelance artist and performs at a number of local open mics and poetry slams around Salt Lake City. At this slam, Love shared a couple of personal pieces from his book Winter Poems, which delicately express the emotional change of winter as well as the physical.
Michael Dimitri joins alongside Love to present a poem for two voices. It is a moving piece written from father to son, and son to father. The two expresses the love, memories and lessons learned between fatherhood and childhood. Dimitri took the stage with a loud, animated voice slamming work from Ani DiFranco and many of his own pieces. He has written poems to raise awareness of child trafficking and child rescue as well as pieces intended to inspire junior high and high school students to try their hand at writing poetry. Dimitri’s exciting energy, as well as clever alliteration and rhyme structure, is enough to keep any poet-slamming fan begging for more.