Powerful poetry

Queen’s Poetry Slam hosts January event

Crowds gathered to watch poets perform at the Mansion.
Crowds gathered to watch poets perform at the Mansion.

Queen’s Poetry Slam hosted their January slam event on Monday to eager audiences with an impressively diverse panel of poets.

The event, hosted at the Mansion, held a crowd of over 60 people that displayed their passion for poetry with finger-snapping and cries of encouragement towards those brave enough to bare their intimate writing to strangers.

The atmosphere was exciting, the lights dim, and the overall feeling of the venue welcoming to those of all circumstances — this was explicitly stated throughout the venue by host Rachel Manson, who also provided bouts of humour and motivating words in between each reading.

Before any actual “slamming” occurred, there was an open mic session where anyone could go on stage and reiterate their poetry without being scored by judges.

One of the performers that stood out to me the most was Raven Adams, who performed a short, yet emotional poem about a friend of hers that had passed away.

“This is about a really good friend of mine — possibly one of the most inspirational people to walk the earth,” Adams said.

The poem, entitled “He Dances”, portrayed a powerful message of loss, and having realizations about your loved ones after it’s too late. The crowd responded enthusiastically and respectfully given the heavy content of the poem.

To start off the timed and judged slam section of the event was Danielle d’Entremont, executive director of Queen’s Poetry Slam. She commanded the stage with ease, and clearly had experience with performing her poetry, giving the audience a comedic introduction.

“I guess this is a lesson — if you kiss a poet once and walk away, they’re going to write a poem about you,” d’Entremont, ArtSci ’14 said. “Have you guys ever kissed a person that smelled like gasoline? I have. This poem is about them.”

The poet then went on to read her powerful piece, “The Candles Have Scoliosis”, which was about a boy she had kissed once that she wrongfully called “Otis”. The poem was sweet, funny and sombre at points, resulting in loud finger-snaps from the audience.

Even though poetry slams are commonly hosted at Queen’s, each one brings something new and exciting to the table, given the wide variety of content that’s present at every slam.

The January slam in particular was abundant with emotional speech, high energy and an atmosphere of acceptance from both the crowd and performers.


Poetry, Slam

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