“Slam was created essentially to give the audience power,” notes Piper Mullins, slam-mistress at the weekly Sunday poetry slams at the Mercury Cafe. “That’s why it’s a competition: Whatever the poet is doing, it should be relevant to the audience.”
The early success of the Denver slam scene (reaching the final stages in national competitions for a couple of years before finally winning those championships) has created mentors who help shape the up-and-comers, who in turn are bound to move and shake the world of poetry for years to come.
“We’re seeing a lot of the turnaround from that mentoring now, where the youth are coming into adult slam teams and those teams are doing really well,” Mullins adds. “I think there are a lot of people who are really invested in fostering a good, open environment and holding that space and making it open for all of the poets who have come forward.”
Representative selection for the Women of the World Poetry Slam (to be held in Austin, in March) will take place on January 26 at the Merc; tonight at 7:30 p.m., the venue will hold a Last Chance Slam, during which the final candidates for next week’s slam-off will be chosen. The Mercury is at 2199 California Street; call 303-294-9281 for more information.
Sun., Jan. 19, 7:30-10:30 p.m., 2014