Friday, July 15, 2011

Waiting for the Slam

i have not
memorized any
of my poems

not liking my poems
today. scared of every
person, young or old
hipster, chic, beatnik
literatea who might jockey
into my spot

not ready
what am i doing here?

who is the dude
with guitar, bandana?
cigarette, dreads
back backpack
halter, tie-die

these messages are
your poem, she says
but the faces behind
the artsy swagger, their
critical ears too hip
for me.

i tell her this, that
it is okay fer her to
come carrying conflict
and tears

energy mixed with
all the other cool
love, anger, pain, joy
flirt, scowl
this is an
interactive game

the lines form
full of questions
and attitude
and verve

must i perform
for them, for me?
i am anxious and
i forgot to eat


Dangerous Linda said...

i know how nerve-racking it can be to wait for your turn at a slam. will you ever do it again???

Clarence said...

Maybe. I'm not a slammer. Not a performer, really, and I know that is what folks are there for, but it was a chance to give a little more life to my writing, so some kind of reading thing is sure to come, if i can find it. I have a few ideas, suggestions, but we will see.

Clarence said...

The cool thing was that in letting people know about the slam, my friend Pat thought to bring her grandchildren. One of them is a high school girl named Dejah who performed a couple of her works. It was very cool. She had game--and a clear mind to speak to the small mass at the coffee shop and to the rest of the world. Right on, Dejah. Wish I had a voice like that when I was her age, although it likely would have gotten me killed where I lived.