April 2nd: Stone Soup Presents Head to Head Haiku, Featuring Sam-R-I

Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m. On April 1st, Stone Soup hosts the Head-to-Head Haiku.

Please consider this a call for participation as Stone Soup and Michael F. Gill host the Head-to-Head Haiku to kick off our celebration of National Poetry Month.

Stone Soup is looking for a minimum of 8 poets to participate in his friendly competition. Interested persons should email Stone Soup at stonesouppoetry@yahoo.com or post on this Facebook event page.

There will be prizes for the Winner and Runner up.

Admission is a suggested $3-5 donation.

Haiku is a traditional Japanese poetry form consisting of 17 syllables, commonly with syllable line counts 5-7-5 and normally includes a reference to nature. These pithy poems can be witty, whimsical, and wise. Head to Head Haiku is a performance poetry competition featuring standard and "modern American" haiku. The form was originated by Daniel Ferri (heard often as a commentator on NPR) at the National Poetry Slam in the 1990s
as a demonstration event. The tradition has been continued by devotees of the Haiku form including Samantha Jane who was a member of the 2004 National Slam Poetry Team representing Boston. She studied with Ferri
in New Mexico in 2005 and developed her Haiku Slammaster character Sam-R-I who has hosted Head to Head Haiku at the Individual World Poetry Slam and who first brought this "new" form of slam poetry to New England.

Just as the "poetry slam" was created to get more audiences excited about hearing poetry, the "Haiku Slam" pays special attention to this short form, with controlled clapping rituals that show influence from the martial arts and are meant to allow the Haiku to be heard distinctly and appreciated. The formula is simple. 4 pairs of Two Competitors affectionately known as
"Haikusters" are given the chance to perform a series of Haiku in series of knock out rounds, judged by "randomly" selected audience members who are trained in front of the audience in the art of reverent judgement. Winners must get the best 3 of 5, 5 of 9 and 9 of 17 in the series of rounds.

Sudden death matches are commonly used as tie breakers or if more than 8 want to compete. The whole show can be quite humorous at times and there is no strict rule other than the poems must be 17 syllables. Purists should rest assured that traditional Haiku often outscore the sarcastic slapstick, but like any slam it depends on the judges and it's more about entertainment and
providing a unique environment for the work be heard.

This will be televised, so no X rated Haiku. Sorry.

I double dare you
Come to Head to Head Haiku
You know you want to