Soul Report 11/5/15

by Steffany Overby

It was a New Sh** Night of “New Beginnings Ya’ll.” At the end of the night BFran had us go around the room to share what was going to stick with us from Neo Soul that night and the responses were beautiful: real people, Tim’s voice, emotion, hopeful pessimist, amazed, I am, nakedness, vulnerability, style…your shoes…debut, betrayal, Phoenix rising from the Ashe, no fear, foundations, women & intimacy, courage & family, heartless psychopath, double negative, community, music, life, pistachio…Ashe & Shelby. What happened that we walked away feeling like this? Let me tell you…

Tim started off the night with his soul full crooning of Too Many Cooks “They love babies until they are born.” Ashe Vernon drowned the room in emotions with I Gave You Flood. BFran did a check in to see how our week had been and Sunni gave me laughter I needed with “I am the jacka** whisperer 10am-7pm.” So true. Shelby Rae did what I have come to love her for…she was vulnerable while calling out bullsh** and speaking truth all at the same time in You Are the Rape Culture. Sunni brought that New Sh** right with Caricature “I’m not really in control here…Poetry.” Teresa Johnson and the satire game is strong in her new sh** How to Touch a Black Woman’s Hair. BFran stepped back as host and spoke to our hearts in his New Sh** It Was Not Her Day “But it was her day to be that missing word in someone’s poem to change their last stanza from suicide to life.” I, Steffany, got on the mic with my New Sh** Blackhole “I am thankful for the bridge you burned that morning…There is no going back.” After a short intermission, Tim gave perspective in Every Time I Climb a Tree “When my mom died I realized for the 1st time I was no longer anyone’s child.” I should have known when Carla’s new shoes got straight 10’s from our fashionistas in the crowd that her piece would be just as fierce and captivating in Board Games “Sorry I’m only as good as your highest wall, sorry I will get inside of your castle only to open the door from the inside and leave.” That stung, didn’t it? There, there…Shaunie was up next to soothe the sting with her New Sh** Without Warning “I begged you not to take me here, told you if I fall it would be mess, asked if you’d catch me here.” (She said she was nervous but I couldn’t tell…You did that thing, Shaunie!) Allen Small came to the mic with New Sh** Love a Nurse (I learned a valuable lesson about not yelling REWIND on New Sh** 1st time off paper lol I’ll do better next time.)

Poetry TV…Poetry TV…Poetry TV. If you haven’t seen it in real life you really must. The channels this week: Sunni as Hip Hop, Tim as Music, Ashe as CW, Teresa as Fox News, Shae as Self Help and BFran was the NRA Channel. I haven’t figured out a way to capture the hilarity of mashups in words, but I will say that our channel changer, Tre (all the way from Dallas), did a great job of channel surfing complete with a beer in his hand. Yaas!
Kelene had 1…2…3 seconds once she walked in the door to prepare before BFran called her onstage…and she showed just why she has become a formidable poet to contend with on the mic in Austin’s Vice “Austin TX, why do you mistake melanin for dirt, sweep your Black and Brown folks aside…” EVERYONE needs to hear that piece. Shelby Rae got back on the mic with an untitled poem written in response to an ex that called her a heartless psychopath. If you know Shelby, you know just how far off path this person was, and the piece spoke for itself “I am a collection of bad decisions stitched together with good intentions.” Ashe Vernon got back on the mic with New Scary Sh** and left us all speechless in Questions for God or Anyone Who is Listening “At the end of the day I have no problem with my body, only the things everyone else seems to assign to it.” Allen Small gave us something to think about with Give and Take. And the last poet of the night before BFran asked for our words for possible writing prompts (see above) was with Teresa Johnson’s Happily Ever Something or Other “They don’t know what to do with flesh and blood and temporary.”
The Slams thus far have been intense…can’t just come at it any ol’ way and think you will walk away with the win, so I will give you heads up NOW so you can start gettin’ ready…We WILL be SLAMMIN’ on 11/19/15. Can’t wait to see ya’lls beautiful faces and words this coming week 11/12/15 at Mr. Catfish & More =)

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