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Showing posts with label From the Editor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label From the Editor. Show all posts

Parkhill, Son (Johnny L.)

The following slam poem was submitted by a poet who goes by the name "Johnny L.", hailing from Colorado. This poem is provided as a written poetry piece, and is about reconciling the present with the pain of the past. Leave a comment to move this slam poem up in the rankings. Our poetry comment system is intended to facilitate feedback for our artists, and to promote creative communication. Don't just read he poetry -- take the leap by, submitting, commenting, and following. --Slam Poems Editor 

Park Hill, Son

My wife sometimes 

Jokes that she

Wants me to be a 

Bit more polished.

Maybe wear capris

Like rich Italian guys.

Or maybe like a scarf 

Or something.

And I say what 

I always say.

I'm from Park Hill.

September Contest: Haiku Challenge

I recently got back into writing haikus (shout out to Isaiah at for inspiring me!)  I'm remembering how useful it is to force myself into this tight, small format. Haikus are three line poems, with five syllables in the first line, seven syllables in the second line, and five syllables in the third line. The force you to focus, and to conserve language. 

The September Slam Challenge is to write the best haiku. Do it!  Submit here when you're ready. 

Here is my most recent series, for reference and inspiration: 

Introspective Wolf
Do you think a wolf
Always knows he is a wolf?
Or does he mean well?

I do not only 
Listen to a man's advice.
First I watch his life.

Knives Out
A harmless request
Invitation to engage.
But will you stab me?

The thing I can't live
Without: connection with You.
To unplug is death.

I quietly write
Into the cosmos for all
Or none to see it.

Uh Oh!
I wonder if the
Satellites can see me when
I am pooping, yo.

Find Your Giants

If you want to grow as a poet, stand on the shoulders of giants. I know you have heard this phrase before, but stop and take a moment to think about it. 

The greatest poetry movements in history have happened when great poets became FAR greater through associating with, and being sharpened by, OTHER POETS.  You can look at the Modernists, the Romantics, and even modern day poetry movements to see this principle in effect. 

As poets, I think we are innately independent. Creation is such a personal process. It takes a lot of humility and work to seek out people that are greater than you in your craft. Most won't do this, and will thus be limited to the confines of how far they can grow in themselves. Not saying  you can't grow without major influences -- but you will be limited. 

A wise man once told me that he seeks to find the rooms where he can be "the dumbest guy in the room." In other words, his strategy to become great is to associate himself with greatness, and learn from greatness. This is a key to exponential growth. 

Find heroes. Find people who are ahead of you in your craft. Find people whose art you respect (maybe poets, visual artists, playwrights, whatever), and make contact.  This principle doesn't only work for poetry -- it works for business, faith, and any category in which you are pursuing growth.  Find your giants, and make contact. 

You heard me!  Make contact. Shoot an email or a Tweet to someone who you think would never respond to you. Instead of telling them all about yourself and what you're doing, ask them penetrating questions that invite them to share their wisdom with you. For every 50 attempts you make, you might get one response. 

But that one response could be a life changer. 

Come on, you're a poet! You're bold, and passionate, and persistent. I know it's scary. 

I know because I am in the process of doing this right now. It's scary. But I have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. 

Find your giants, and grow!  I would love to hear your comments if this impacts you.  Even more, I would also love to hear about your results if you put this into practice. 

--Johnny Levy, Slam Poems Editor

Editor's Note: New Contest - "Why We Write"

New Contest

It's Word Wednesday!

Last week's contest is still running. 

Here's your assignment, 
If you choose to accept it: 

Write a poem 
About why you write poetry.

Music to Write To: Anatu (Bleach)

I am not only looking for great slam poetry, but also great music that stirs creativity. This instrumental track provides such a powerful backdrop for imagination. Try throwing down to this one and let me know how it moves you. As always, we are here to serve your creative process and to inspire great art! --Slam Poems Editor 



Touch (Johnny Levy)

This guy mashed my face in with his elbow
When we were playing basketball.
Old cornfed, elbow-swinging suckah. 

I had to get four stitches

Father's Touch (Johnny Levy, Slam Poems Editor)

I was an asthmatic kid
And when I got sick
It was like breathing through
A wet afro in my windpipe.
The panic, the agony,
My own lungs
Strangling me.
Will the next breath
Happen? Can't think like that.
Just keep breathing,
Like heaving thousand pound rocks
With my chest.