Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Plea to Open Mic Poets

Do not introduce your poem. Please.

If you feel you have to say something, at least do not tell me what the poem is about.

You do not own your poem. As soon as one word leaves your mouth on its way to a listener's ears, the poem no longer belongs to you. It is a gift. Each audience member receives your poem as a unique and personal version of what you wrote. Do not spoil the gift by placing conditions on your giving. If you tell us the meaning, you limit the way we can receive your poem.

Like any gift, a poem brings surprise and discovery. Let your audience unwrap your poem for themselves. Let them absorb your words and discover their meanings on their own. Never spoil the surprise.

Please, please, please. Do not introduce your poem.

1 comment: