Youth Poet Cohosts The Next Swerve!

Saturday, April 4 at 7 pm.

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April is National Poetry Month. Philadelphia is looking for it’s next Youth Poet Laureate. Sounds like the perfect combination to celebrate at the Swerve!

This has been an amazing year for the evolution of The Swerve!  We have heard so many talented voices, breathing words of wisdom through our mic, challenging our ideas, pushing us to pick at our heart scabs.  We have been left breathless and in awe of the raw life moments laid down at our audience’s grateful feet.  And now, we reach out to the young poets in our region, anxious to share our space and our vision, ready to clap, and snap, and gasp at the talent that takes our stage.  Will you join us?  

Come out and throw down your spoken word skills.  Bring your friends and your original works.  Revel in the joy that follows. 

Che

Poet and Cohost, Che Carter

On Saturday, April 4, our doors open at 7 PM.  This is an Open Mic event being co-hosted by Mary Ann Domanska and Che Carter (10th grader at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy).  We’re encouraging poets of ALL ages to join us for one electric evening of powerful prose.  Plus let’s not forget our live jazz backbeats. Post it, share it, and put it on your calendar!

ALSO, you still have time to apply to be Philadelphia’s next Youth Poet Laureate! Philadelphia’s Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE) is now accepting applications.  Entries must be submitted online or postmarked by April 10, 2015.  You can reach them HERE.

 

photo of Mary Ann Domanska

Poet and Cohost Mary Ann Domanska

What Poetry Is

 It rips through the flesh

            to get at the guts

It uses a scalpel to peel back

            the truth of things

 

Am I making you uncomfortable?

            Do you hate the sight of blood?

 

It is what we’re made of,

            this liquid of life

and poetry performs anatomical dissections

            on the meat of us

 

 This lancet has a thin, sharp blade

            of particular words,

 words that slice through 

            to our aching souls

because what we hear can 

            quicken the heartbeat

 

Poets are surgeons, of a sort, 

            trained in the school of life experiences

and they are skilled at handling

            scars and contusions

those nights that have left us 

            beaten down and injured at the core

 

A poem might begin like a saline drip, 

hydrating and soothing our emptiness            

then slowly it works its way

            into our bones

 

With just the right twist of a lyrical phrase

            you feel an easing of pain and lessoning of rage

the anesthesia of knowing another soul understands

            unburdens your body

relaxes your mind

            calms your heart

 

They say surgery is 

an ancient medical specialty

Then writing is an 

ancient unraveling of ghosts

and we are the interpreters 

of these maladies

stitching up the afflictions of living

with syllables and tones

seeking out the cures with gentle 

controlled strokes of a pen

 

and everyone of you can find your remedies 

in our words

 

Mary Ann Domanska

February, 2015