To share a community’s love of poetry, the Case Reserve Review, Case Western Reserve University’s literary and art magazine, and CWRU’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society, hosted their Fall Poetry Slam in the Guilford House Lounge on Nov. 3 from 7-9 p.m.
Complete with food and refreshments, including apple pie, pumpkin pie and apple cider, the poetry slam was a wonderful way to celebrate the seemingly all too quick coming and going of autumn. The lounge was just the right size for a very comfortable and intimate evening.
Because the event did not require people to sign up to read or perform poetry, the night started off a bit slowly and awkwardly, as any open mic usually does. But as more people straggled in during the first half-hour, the audience started to seem less like a sea of strangers, and more like a group of friends coming together to inspire and to be inspired by poetry.
“This is the third poetry slam that I’ve been a part of,” Editor-in-Chief of the Case Reserve Review, third-year Liz Wilson, said. “I think the turnout has grown since the first one, and there are always different people who come and make the atmosphere at the event unique and special.”
After the first few poems read by the emcee, audience members started volunteering to share poetry that meant something to them. People were reading their own poems from notebooks as well as others’ poems from the internet on their phones. People “snapplaused,” laughed and supported their fellow artists.
“.…Once people got into the rhythm of the night, the event went smoothly,” Wilson said.
By intermission, almost all the seats were filled and audience members were excited to share their poems.
One poem interacted with the audience, asking that they close their eyes, breathe deeply and be aware of their breathing.
Another creative poem read was entitled, “A Pythonic Lament.” For those of you in programming classes, this should sound intriguing, as it was clearly a dig at Python, a programming language. I don’t understand coding, but I still found it hilarious.
After this poem was read, a girl pulled out her programming homework from Java and read that as a poem, and even though it seemed to be the farthest you could get from poetry, it sounded like a legitimate poem.
After a poem addressing Avatar: the Last Airbender, multiple audience members erupted into a conversation about what type of “bender” they would be.
I was even moved to read my latest poem aloud. I also read two haikus, alternating with another girl who had three haikus. Neither of us knew what each other’s was about. We sandwiched completely different stories, somehow digging deeper to connect them.
There were also some poems read in French because why not? Anything and everything was on the table.
I believe that everything is poetry—this event just proved that. As the evening full of poetry went on, there was some super creative stuff.
“…For next semester, I’m hoping to make [the poetry slam] even bigger than this one by hopefully working with other clubs, like Slam Poetry Club and Writers Club, to plan it to make it even better,” Wilson said.