“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.”
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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