Cantab Recap for Wednesday, February 15, 2017

You must know, Cantabbers, what a sweet sight it is to see the room packed from wall to wall for a poetry show… Especially if you arrived early enough to secure yourself a seat and a coveted open mic spot, of course. This Wednesday, we welcomed the incomparable Safia Elhillo to our loving and grungy little stage, and she brought the house down with the beautiful long-drawn-out-breath-of-work she’s become notable for. Oh, and did you not learn enough about how country makes and is made by lines and accent, or how love makes and is made by a body, or how Abdelhalim Hafez lived and sang and died? No problem: Safia’s upcoming book, The January Children, is available right the heck now from the University of Nebraska Press.

Our third speed slam in the 8×8 series was a wicked affair, with an odd number of poets getting into the mix for two rounds of three- and two-minute poems. At the end of each, Kieran Collier and Em Taylor rose to the top of the scores, facing off in the one-minute round: Kieran took the big win and the ten bucks, cementing his spot in the upcoming World Qualifier Speed Slam this May.

Next week: we keep rolling with our incredible 2017 schedule, welcoming Minneapolis heartbreaker/powerhouse Hieu Minh Nguyen back to our mic. Trust us, it’s gonna be good: get here early for your cozy seat, and hang out until half-past-eleven to catch the fourth speed slam in the series.