The Art of Word

I went to a slam
of poetry, a jam
performers, they spoke
from their hearts
and evoked
true feelings of awe
and drop, did my jaw
I’ll speak of my time
and fill in these lines
I’ll speak of their power
but ask for your time
way less than an hour
and you’ll take it just fine
as my words are like wine
Read below on the event
& my time, how ‘twas spent
the rhyming soon will end
as I’m kinda bored with it. 😉
As a poet, my skills are sad
but as a critic, I ain’t too bad.

The Art of Word

Poetry reading. Poetry Slam. Poetry Jam. Poetry in general. Never been my first choice, my last choice or even a contender in the list of possible choices as ‘something fun to do’. However, in the name of trying something new, I accepted the invite and planned to suit up in my best poetry ensemble – black jeans, black turtleneck, topped with a black beret. Realizing I don’t own any of that stuff (turtlenecks? Do they still even make those?) I wore what I thought was the next best thing – anything else.

The Art of Word: Takes place on the last Sunday of every month at Raw Canvas Art House & Lounge. It showcases accomplished feature artists to draw the crowds with an added open mic component to give amateur poets a platform to showcase their …ahem…“talent” (talent sometimes optional). Co-hosted by Kevan “Scruffmouth” Cameron, a well-known Vancouver based spoken word artist, the event’s aim is to  increase awareness and participation in the art of words (music, performance, spoken, etc.).

My inviter  – a big fan of one of the featured artists – was excited to attend and her enthusiasm easily spilled over to me (ya, I’m easy). November’s showcase was scheduled to begin promptly at 8pm. Arriving promptly at 8:45, we walk in between sets to a room buzzing with excited (and probably alcohol infused) energy.

Let’s Start the Show

First up – featured musician and poet Carlos Joe Costa performing a jazz infused set and charming the crowd with his deep honey tones as he sang of love and eloquently spoke of good times.

With the crowd warmed up (did I mention Raw Canvas is also a wine bar?), it was time to slip in a few open mic acts. I’ll use the terms unique, eclectic, and not-to-be-missed because those are terms that can both describe an amazing act as well as the perfect description for the exact opposite of that (not to be missed because unless your friends sat there with you, they might not believe you). Every amateur performer is different and everyone has different tastes so while not all of them get my attention, they all definitely get my respect.  Plus when it’s a really, really out there performance, it’s fun to giggle at. Hee hee hee.

Cool art work around Raw Canvas

However, as some acts started to drag on, I started to question why I had attended this thing in the first place (damn easily contagious enthusiasm).

As if in response to my waning attention, onto the stage walks my friend’s reason for attending: Mister Dwayne Morgan. His poetry was clever, moving, and empowering. Being a PG rated blog (well for this week at least), I can’t even get into some of the more descriptive woman worshiping sexual scenarios he spoke about in a few of his pieces. I can only say he made my jaw drop and my knees quiver and leave it at that. And of course give you a few links to check it out yourself: So get yourself a nice big glass of wine, get real cozy and check it out here, and then here and if you don’t want him to stop (and you won’t) then check it out here too.

His opening piece: “Have a baby by me, be a millionaire” intelligently touched on pop culture trends and society’s material based self-valuation versus true values of integrity and self worth. A thought-provoking piece to encourage us to want to be better without coming across as preachy or sanctimonious.

As a wanna-be wordsmith myself, I loved his poem about a “Love Affair with Words” where he implied that as a word based artist, he was cheating on his woman with words while cleverly joking about “having threesomes with rhyming couplets”, and about his lady demanding of him: “who is that bitch Haiku?”

As if Dwayne Morgan wasn’t enough, next came open mic guest poet Tasha Miller who finished the evening and silenced the still buzzing crowd with her impressive talent. Especially memorable and funny were some of the quotes on rejection from her mini book (paraphrasing):

Trust me. Even if we were both dressed in sweats and in a gym – we wouldn’t work out.

Even if you and I had the blood type ‘o positive’, and I badly needed a transfusion , you still wouldn’t be my type.

Wrap it up

I thank you for your time
as I end my final rhyme
The show was lots of  fun,
and I was sad when it was done.
Of the expert I claim to be
one thing was clear to me:
I still ain’t no poet,
And now y’all do know it

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