Antoine Duke - “Black Picket Fences”
“I always thought those burning crosses you left were your love letters to us…”
Antoine Duke, of Minneapolis Community and Technical College, performing as part of the “Best of the Rest” on Finals stage at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational.
Antoine is one of the most dynamic young performers I know. At only 19 he has managed to create a body of work in multiple mediums that is carefully crafted profoundly wise and well delivered. I can’t wait to see what he does in the years to come, keep an eye out folks!
When I find her. Find her in a forest. In a cabin
under smoke and clouds shaped like smoke. When I find her
and call her name (nothing) and knock (nothing)
and build a machine that believes it’s God and the machine
calls her name (nothing) and knocks (nothing).
When I tear the machine down and she runs from the cabin
pointing a gun at my memories and telling me
to leave, stranger, leave, man of hammers.
When I can’t finish that story. When I get to the gun
pointed at my head. When I want it to go off.
When everything I say to anyone all day long
is bang. That would be today. When I can’t use her name.
All day long. Soft as cotton, tender as kiss. Bang.
Sam Cook - “God in Code: The Poet Tupac Shakur” (Button Poetry First Readings)
“In this country, the poet Christ is primarily worshipped by those who wish him white… who call his murder a miracle and then oppress in his name.”
A first reading from the Saint Paul Soap Boxing Grand Slam.
Love the first draft of this piece. So so good. My touring partner much smarter than the rest of us. :P Thank god for this man in my life.
Elliot Darrow - “God is Gay” (CUPSI 2013 Finals)
“Keep in mind, Jesus had two dads and turned out just fine.”
Performing for UNC Chapel Hill during the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational.
Glad to have been here to see this piece! I am all about this poem, dude goes hard and you can hear just how much we loved it in the audience!!
Dylan Garity - “Friend Zone”
“The problem is, when I started thinking of myself as a savior, I ended up thinking of myself as a savior with a salary.”
A first reading, from the Saint Paul Soap Boxing Grand Slam on May 6!
Just wait for it…. Really proud of Dylan for this piece! As men in a patriarchy we play a huge role in dismantling rape culture. Pumped to see men stepping up in their art like this!
HIEU NGUYEN - “It Was The Winter…”
“Nostalgia forgets to visit this street. It is too busy with tree houses and rope swings; it doesn’t have time for all this grey.”
Button Poetry’s own HIEU NGUYEN is a finalist in the 2013 Write Bloody Publishing Contest. Reblog (and like this video on youtube) to help Hieu win a publishing deal!
This is my brother and one of the most talented poets I know. Check this video out, I love this poem!!
REAL. FUCKING. TALK.
Mega - “Mother” (CUPSI 2013)
“You can’t say you gave birth to me if I had to escape from you.”
Sean “Mega” Desvignes, performing on finals stage at CUPSI 2013. He was awarded Best Rookie at the tournament.
I’d say this was my second favorite piece form all of CUPSI 2013. Mega is one of my new favorites, I love watching this man on the microphone. BEHOLD.
Tonya Ingram - “Unsolicited Advice (after Jeanann Verlee)” (CUPSI 2013)
“When your mother asks you why you take so long in the shower, tell her that you hate this cancer, this dark that wears you like a plague.”
Tonya Ingram, performing for NYU on finals at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational. NYU went on to win the tournament for the second year in a row.
It has been a blessing to watch Tonya these past few years, she is a hugely powerful writer and performer and this piece was one of my favorites from the tournament (CUPSI 2013).
Rachel Rostad - “To JK Rowling, from Cho Chang”
“Let me cry over boys more than I speak. Let me fulfill your diversity quota. Just one more brown girl mourning her white hero.”
To check out some of the dialogue surrounding the piece, visit http://rachelrostad.tumblr.com
For the full text of the poem, go to https://www.facebook.com/rachelrostad
Rachel straight going in, I can’t believe how many notes this video has! Rachel! Minnesota! Button Poetry! BANGARANG!
Safia Elhillo & Jamaica Osorio - “What I Learned in the Fire”
“Love is just something to do until the war starts.”
Our first video from FInal Stage at CUPSI 2013. This poem from the championship team - NYU - transcends the traditional boundaries of what can be done in slam, in group poetry and on stage. Our hats are off to Safia and Jamaica.
My favorite poem from CUPSI. So incredible and mesmerizing. BEHOLD!
Sean “Mega” DesVignes- “This Is How I Challenge Diabetes to a Fight” (CUPSI 2013)
“My aunt’s kidneys are two deadbeat fathers married to the same woman.”
Sean “Mega” DesVignes, named Best Rookie at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational, performing in semifinals.
Mega just killing it. This dude has impressed me each time I have had the opportunity to see him hit a stage!
Swallow your pride, before it swallows you.