For this blog post, I am focusing on how to share the poetry I’ve learned to write instead of learning more types of poetry. I find sharing poetry to be equally as important to writing it.
Poets often attend open mic nights-short for open microphone-and share their own poems or read poems of other poets. These nights are relaxed and uncompetitive. Audience members sign up to share, and are typically asked to keep it within a certain time constraint. These often take place in libraries, cafes, coffee shops, book stores, and bars. Open mic nights are led by a host, who normally is also a poet or spoken word artist. Audience members are not required to go up and share their work, nor do they even have to write poetry at all. The most important thing to remember at an open mic, is be considerate to others. Talk to other poets and let them know what you liked, give input, and don’t perform and then leave immediately following.
Similar to open mics are poetry slams. Poetry slams are competitive and are composed of poets reading or reciting his/her own original work. Poets and poems are scored by seleced members of the audience or by a panel of judges. They all are scored from 0-10, 0 being the worst and 10 being the best. To attempt to eliminate outliers, the highest and lowest scores are dropped and the middle three are kept. The total scores can range from 0-30. There are two main types of slams: open and invited. In an open slam, the competition is open to anyone whom wishes to compete, within the available slots. An invited slam only allows for invited individuals to compete. The last type of slam is known as a theme slam. Theme slams are more of a genre and require poets to conform to a particular theme, genre, or any other requirement.
Other ways to share poetry in a more broad sense is to write and share it online or in a magazine. While the experience of performing a poem live can be helpful and exillerating, your words can only reach so many ears. Better than doing one or the other, why not do both? Share your poetry live so the audience there can hear themselves how you paint an image in the poem, and also share it so others may read it and connect in the way they see best fit. There are no rules to poetry-besides plagiarism-so write and share how you like to inspire, teach, and influence others while also becoming more confident with your own poetry.
Cover Photo Credits: Pixabay.com