Listening to a teen poetry slam on NPR

by Mike Talbert
The Town
Third Place, June 2011
Judged by Judith Fitzgerald


The sense was too scant
and rarely piquant,
the slam was rap-rant

mostly rap for sure
expression not demure,
emotions were pure

teen-age esoteric,
verse so hyperbaric
of things hysteric

yet i had the fate
to anticipate
lines first rate,
no ego masturbate

words of immense
redolence
of little sense

beyond example:
an acne pimple,
keep it simple;

color you words azure,
avoid manure,
seek a cure

with your hustle,
create a tussle,
and please don’t rustle

idle lines that leave me bewildered


East of E-Den's brillicious technotartency —
Either sour gripes or the grapes of rap —
Flippin' urban posse of gutsy goombahs
& guidadaistic honchettes ranking honour
Alongside more traditional phenomena —
Beatification, pinballistics, credit scores —
We now return disenfranchised signifried
You to your regularly skedded miracures.
— Judith Fitzgerald

  • February 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Nebraska, Summer
      by Greta Bolger
      The Waters

      Second Place

      Goldback Fern
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Writer's Block

      Third Place

      Negotiatin’ Wi Demons (For wee Rabbie Burns)
      by John J. Williamson
      PenShells

  • January 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      You Arrive Like Fall, Suddenly
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Writer's Block

      Second Place

      Waiting for the Second Coming
      by Jim Doss
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Third Place

      Homeless
      by J.J. Williamson
      Babilu

      Honorable Mention

      When I Go Out and Then Come Back
      by Guy Kettelhack
      Wild Poetry Forum