Yesterday afternoon, I had the honor of hearing some fine youth slam poets speak their art and truth. Young men and women took their turns on stage at The Independent, their intelligent poetic explorations of life resonating deeply with me. Being unrelated to any of the poets, I was tapped to be a judge, which is always a challenge, because I want to give every poem a ten. Does judgehood make me listen in a different way? Maybe I'm even more aware of the rhyming, timing and metaphor -- all of which were brilliantly used throughout the slam. What can I say? These kids are using the power of their own voices, the power of their own pens, to connect, reflect and dissect this crazy world. They show what being human is all about.
The next Under-21 They Speak Youth Slam is scheduled for Feb. 27 at 4 pm at The Independent, on Brushy St. near 5th St., just east of I-35. The slam series is put on by the Texas Youth Word Collective. See their site for more info about this great program.