Welcome back, CUPSI poets! The house was packed last night with the triumphant return of our local poets from college nationals, including Emerson, Simmons, Northeastern, UMass Boston, and more (who’d we miss?), all to catch JR Mahung and the Champion of Champions slam! As expected, Northeastern co-coach and LTAB co-director JR rocked the house with his sensitive yet unflinching personal story. This 2016 Pushcart Prize Nominee is due a new book out on Pizza Pi Press: keep an eye out for his newest work from the publisher. After the conclusion of JR’s feature, six past slam winners took the stage to vie for the Champion of Champions title, held for the duration of 2017 by Kylie Noelle. After the conclusion of three rounds, Sara Mae and RebeccaLynn faced off in the one-minute finals: RebeccaLynn took the win and decided to roll into the new-poem round to challenge the champ! When the dust cleared, a new champ had been crowned: congratulations to RebeccaLynn, who will be invited to defend the title this August.
Next week: speaking of CUPSI returnees… We can hardly wait to see the Berklee crowd in the house, who no doubt will turn out in force (come early to get your seat!) for 2015 National Poetry Slam champ and forthcoming Pizza Pi author Jonathan Mendoza. Our slam will be the Last Chance Speed Slam: our final open speed slam of the year, and the last opportunity to get into our World Qualifier on May 3.