Feature for February 1, 2012: World Qualifier Finals

Boston Poetry Slam

2012 World Qualifiers

The World Qualifier Finals will determine the Boston Poetry Slam’s representative to the 2012 Individual World Poetry Slam. Top scorers from the World Qualifier Semi-Finals will compete in four rounds of slam, including one long-poem (4-minute) round. The two-night, six-poem series will culminate with a single poet left standing!

The eight finalists are pictured below. All photos are courtesy of and © Marshall Goff, and all were taken at the January 18 World Qualifier Semi-Finals. Photos may be republished with appropriate artist credit only. Media outlets seeking high-resolution versions may contact the photographer directly.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the slam begins at approximately 10:00. (There is no open poetry slam tonight.) The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $5 to help fundraise for the winner’s trip to IWPS.

Cantab Recap for Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Hadn’t heard of Megan Falley before hearing her at the Cantab this week? No biggie: your life is better now… Megan rocked a fabulously thoughtful set, writing with both a gentleness and directness of craft. The slam was won by Patrick S., who edged out Nora in a thoroughly enjoyable final pairing.

Next week: OH BOY OH BOY OH BOY IT’S WORLD QUALIFIER FINALS. Eight poets will slam off for the honor of representing the Cantab at the 2012 Individual World Poetry Slam! You can see a gallery of photos of their pretty faces on the event page, courtesy of Marshall Goff. You’ll want to save some extra quarters this week, as the cover charge is $5 to help fundraise for the winning poet’s trip to the event.

Tips from the Bar: Proverb, Punchline

Write a poem with an excessively long title that serves as set-up for a punchline.

Feature for January 25, 2012: Megan Falley

Megan Falley

Megan Falley

Megan Falley is one of just a handful of poets to be published on both Write Bloody Press and Penmanship Books. After earning her undergrad degree and representing SUNY New Paltz for four years at CUPSI, she helped found one of the largest collegiate spoken word tournaments in the country. Her publication credits include Vinyl, kill author, and PANK. She may be reached at meganfalley.com.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs at approximately 10:00. An open poetry slam in the 8×8 series will follow. The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $3.

Cantab Recap for Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Well, we don’t call it slam for nothing; last night’s event was boisterous, rollicking, edge-of-your-seat kind of fun, all tied together with that silly scoring system we informally use to reduce art to cold, hard numbers. That’s right, the World Qualifier Semi-Finals rocked the house from beginning to end, with competing poets rolling out their highly anticipated 2- and 1-minute performance poems. Congratulations to the poets in bold, who have qualified to advance to the World Qualifier Finals on February 1:

Melissa Newman-Evans, top scorer for the night, laying down "The Shame Machine." Photo by Marshall Goff.

Melissa Newman-Evans, top scorer for the night, laying down "The Shame Machine." Photo by Marshall Goff.

1. Melissa Newman-Evans 54.4
2. Mckendy Fils-Aimé 53.0
3. Meaghan Ford 51.8
4. Nate Leland 51.8
5. Kevin Spak 51.5
6. Paulie Lipman 51.3
7. Matthew Richards 50.1
8. Sam Teitel 49.0

9. Bobby Crawford
10. Sophia Holtz
11. Z
DNS: Adam Stone, Carlos Williams, Tatayana Brown, Antonia Lassar, Sean Patrick Mulroy, Brian Omni Dillon, Simone Beaubien, Christian Drake

We’ll have a quick break from the tough competition next week to bring you Megan Falley, Write Bloody author and SUNY New Paltz grad. We’ll also hold the third open poetry slam in the current 8×8 series.

Tips from the Bar: Your Poem Is Obviously About Michael Gill

Write a poem that uses lemons as its central image. Do not use the following words: yellow, sour, bitter, “when life gives you,” or meringue.

Feature for January 18, 2012: World Qualifier Semi-Finals

Boston Poetry Slam

Boston Poetry Slam

The World Qualifier Semi-Finals is one of our biggest slams of the year, and by far the wildest. Poets will compete in 2- and 1-minute speed rounds to see who advances to the February 1 finals. This unusual format is guaranteed to flush out some extraordinary and atypical writing from your favorite slammers.

Qualified to slam: Z, Carlos Williams, Sophia Holtz, Tatyana Brown, Matthew Richards, Paulie Lipman, Antonia Lassar, McKendy Fils-Aimé, Bobby Crawford, Sam Teitel, Nate Leland, Sean Patrick Mulroy, Brian Omni Dillon, Meaghan Ford, Simone Beaubien, Melissa Newman-Evans, Christian Drake, and Kevin Spak.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the slam begins at approximately 10:00. (There is no open poetry slam tonight.) The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $5 to help fundraise for the venue’s IWPS representative.

Cantab Recap for Wednesday, January 11, 2012

It’s been a great 2012 so far, folks; Scott Beal rocked his feature slot last night with a superb array of humor and tragedy, storytelling and surreality, all of it read and performed ultra-satisfactorily. A few open slots in the slam didn’t stop five folks from getting down to business, though; Kevin Spak took a hard-earned victory over Nora Meiners, securing the last spot in next week’s slam.

Wait, is it time for the World Qualifier Semi-Finals already? Dang, we’ve got eighteen poets qualified for this thing! Next week, whoever steps up will slam off in a grand two-round slam with 2- and 1-minute poems. This is always a fun show with unusual work: remember that the cover charge is $5 for this night to help raise money for our representative to IWPS.

Tips from the Bar: Don’t Make It Creepy

Consider a historical figure whose goals may have been admirable, but whose means to achieve them were not. Write a poem to correct that person’s methodology. (Extra tip: if you are thinking about trying this with a particular WW leader… Don’t.)

Feature for January 11, 2012: Scott Beal

Scott Beal

Scott Beal

Scott Beal is a poet, educator, freelance writer, and stay-at-home father of two who grew up in Michigan, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Ohio, and earned his MFA from the University of Michigan in 1996. His poems have appeared recently in Indiana Review, Dunes Review, Radius, and in a split book with Rachel McKibbens and Aracelis Girmay entitled Jangle the Threads (Red Beard Press, 2010). He teaches poetry and fiction workshops at the Neutral Zone and 826michigan, and serves as a writer-in-the-schools for Dzanc Books in Ann Arbor and for InsideOut Literary Arts in Detroit. He recently co-authored Underneath: The Archaeological Approach to Creative Writing with Jeff Kass (Red Beard Press, 2011).

In addition to his feature, Scott will also present an early-bird workshop at the Cantab before doors open for the show.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs at approximately 10:00. An open poetry slam in the 8×8 series will follow. The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $3.