Monday! June 15th! Boston Cantab Slam Team Members SOPHIA HOLTZ! Plus IRON POET QUALIFIER! “Wolf vs. Bellamy!”

Posted in Uncategorized on June 11, 2015 by dirtygerund


SOPHIA HOLTZ is a writer, performer, and sometimes-illustrator. She pressphoto_shane-godfreyhas featured in bars, colleges, and the occasional basement throughout the United States, and is a member of the 2015 Boston Poetry Slam team. Her work has appeared in RHINO, decomP, H_NGM_N, and other journals. She received her BA from Hampshire College, and is a soon-to-be MFA candidate at NYU. Check out numerous links to her work on-line through her website, (photo by Shane Godfrey)

BONUS RUCKUS: IRON POET QUALIFIER “Wolf vs. Bellamy” – This should be interesting. We’re looking for a number one contender to face newly crowned Iron Poet Champion RAINY MAPLE SUGAR CANDY. We think we’ll get a good challenge from the winner of this wolfmatch-up. JONATHAN WOLF is no stranger to our stage or Worcester Performance Poetry in general, yet he’s done a lot of covers of other people’s work lately (not a complaint, he always breathes such amazing life into the words of others, but forcing him out of semi-new-poem-sharing retirement ballamymight bring forth a gush of new words outta this cat. JOSEPH JAMES BELLAMY is a relative newcomer to our open mic, but has been a regular over the past couple months, bringing smooth, thoughtful, rhythmic flows to our stage, yet, he’s never competed in an iron poet match before. You know the drill. Two poets, 3 poetic concoctions, 3 judges judging on three criteria and one diabolical secret ingredient from Chairman YOSH SHARTIN. Winner faces the champ next month.

The BROTHERS WHITE (Aaron & Jay that is) are rocking a special diptych painting this week as they serve as our visual artists in residence. They’ll be whiteplaying off each others work. Let’s hope that doesn’t lead to any Cain & Abel ish. We’ve located drummer ALEX THORSEN (picture to the right is art work by Aaron White and totally not a police composite sketch of the formerly missing Alex Thorsen) who totally had a good excuse for not playing last Monday (like notes from parents, doctors, student loan officers and multiple law enforcement officials and everything) and promises a return to house band action as he rejoins MATT & THE WANKERS. We also have a snack volunteer in new open mic reader JAKE who’s generously volunteered! (Editor’s note: It’s super rare that your faithful blogger has all the relevant information that you, the reader, need to have in hand, in order to make the educated decision to rock out with us this Monday!)                      GO ART!



Posted in Uncategorized on June 4, 2015 by dirtygerund
FEATURED GUEST: TOLONDA HENDERSON is a poet, a librarian, tolondaand a Harry Potter Scholar. Since 2011, she has been writing and performing from the unique perspective of a queer African-American woman raised in New England and living in the Washington, DC area. Tolonda’s performance of “Regrets” at the 2013 NPS was recorded and produced by Button Poetry and has been viewed more than 15,000 times. She has featured at Bang Said the Gun in London and throughout the Washington, DC area including Busboys and Poets and the legendary Spit Dat. Described as “tenaciously eloquent” by Love the Poet of the Punany Poets (as seen on HBO) and “badass” by 2009 WOWPS champion Rachel McKibbens, Tolonda was a finalist for the 2013 Beltway Poetry Slam team. When not on stage, Tolonda enjoys crochet, handbells, and recording books for struggling readers.
BONUS RUCKUS: OKAY, I THINK WE’LL BE BACK OUTSIDE SO WE CAN DO THIS DANG PIE-KU CHALLENGE – we’ve been brettkelleythreatening this for three weeks now and I think now might finally be the time we get it done. It’s a haiku, at the bottom of a pie tin, first to read their haiku wins special prize! I’m really tired of writing this. HAHA MATT & THE WANKERS NEVER TIRE OF BRINGING THE TASTY JAMS TO OUR OPEN MIC! The super talented BRETT KELLEY is returning to do the visual arts, bring money, cause Nick and I are fixing to outbid you! Who’s got the snacks? (please confer with Emilee so she knows you’re bringing snacks. Thanks) YOSH & MIKEY will be ready to talk basketball and hockey championships. Better hope there aren’t two games happening at once, or you’ll never get served at the bar! Boom! You just got served!

Monday! June 1st! The legendary RYK McINTYRE returns! Plus “Pie-Ku” Challenge!

Posted in Uncategorized on May 28, 2015 by dirtygerund

Poetry under the stars has been working out! Let’s hope the no rain on Mondays continues!

POETRY FEATURE: RYK McINTYRE can be counted among the ryk2Boston Poetry at the Cantab originals; in 1991, he represented the venue at the National Poetry Slam. A mainstay of the scene. After a fourteen-year absence from the National Poetry Slam, Ryk earned a spot on the venue’s slam team in 2005, setting the record for Cantab slammer with the longest hiatus and return. Additionally, he slammed in national competition for Worcester and Providence over the past few years and was also featured at the very first Legends of Slam showcase at the 2006 National Poetry Slam. Ryk has toured nationally and in Canada, opening for acts as varied as Leon Redbone, Andrei Codrescu and Jim Carroll. He has performed his work at NYC’s New School and Boston’s ICA and Strand Theater, as well as appearing as part of Lollapalooza. He has been published in Short Fuse- An Anthology Of New Fusion Poets, 100 Poets Against The New World Order, Aim for The Head (Write Bloody Press), nthposition, The Worcester Review, The Huffington Post & released a full length collection After Everything Burns, available on Sargent Press. Ryk’s a Worcester favorite and he’s coming really close to breaking the seal on our first “5 Timers Club” feature record, ala SNL Baldwin fame.

BONUS RUCKUS: Let’s try this again, now! with a better name, the piePIE-KU Eating and Performance Challenge! There’s a haiku at the bottom of the pie. We’ll time you and see who rocks this the fastest. Winner gets an awesome prize that’s not a pie. We assure you. You are so assured. (Note: we’ll only do this outside, cause it could get messy) You are now even more assured!

They don’t serve pie at Ralph’s. If you’re lucky, perhaps snack time queen Emilee will bake and serve pies for snack time. Maybe you got it like that and wish to volunteer yourself. Email Emilee and we’ll sing your praises (does not have to be pie, by the way, just can’t stop on this pie jag). YOSH & MIKEY don’t want pie in their beards! They do like tips in their jars!

Monday! May 25th, 7 Hills Slam Team Member ASHLEY WONDER! Plus! The Picnic Pie Haiku Challenge!

Posted in Uncategorized on May 21, 2015 by dirtygerund

Will be out under the stars again?! We hope so! Thank you and great job getting down to sign up early this past week! We started just after 9pm for the first time in a long time! Let’s keep up the consistency!

POETRY FEATURE: 7 Hills Poetry Slam Team Members ASHLEY ashleywonderWONDER has been writing poetry for over 15 years and performing Spoken Word for the past 8, in her hometown of Worcester, throughout Boston, Providence, and as far as Maryland. She is a Slam Poet in the Worcester and Boston poetry scenes and won her first Slam in Worcester December 2014. Her chapter book Miraculous Wonder is now available. She uses her life experiences, relationship with God, to help inspire and motivate others to always have hope. She is known to perform with dynamic passion no matter the content in hopes of positively impacting her audience.

BONUS RUCKUS: The STATE FAIR PIE EATING CONTEST W/ pieeatingcontestPOEM! Challenge! Let’s get foolish! Spring time brings thoughts ofcarnivals and the festivals and outdoor shenanigans. We’re much more comfortable getting messy outside, so let’s rock a pie eating contest. We’ll plant a poem at the end of your pie. Contestants speed to the finish and whoever can read their piece the fastest, wins a special prize (probably some cash included to cover your dry cleaning bill!) This one’s gonna get super mature super fast!

Rumors have it we WILL have a visual artist this week. MATT & THE WANKERS are enjoying the fresh air! We’re still tinkering with the lights and outdoor set up, we’ll try to make things a little more cozy this Monday. Thanks to MUNCHIES nickgerundMIDNIGHTS MENU for providing us with the delicious snack time! Any volunteers wanna follow up on this great cheer? NICHOLAS EARL DAVIS (pictured garbling to the right) wishes to institute his first DG weekly writing prompt this week (on instagram?), anyone bringing in a new piece from the prompt will be under consideration for a $10 open mic prize, straight outta his pocket. Nick’s investing in your awesome poems! YOSH & MIKEY would like to remind you that any prize money taken from Nick can easily be exchanged for goods and services from the bar! Capitalism!


Monday, May 18th! Write Bloody Author SARAH Q MORGAN! Plus! “Summer Blockbuster? or poem?” Guess Challenge!

Posted in Uncategorized on May 13, 2015 by dirtygerund

DIRTY GERUND ASKS YOU TO PLEASE plEASe, PLEase, arrive before 9:30pm if you wish to share on the open mic. WE ARE TRYING TO BEGIN SHOWS AT 9PM. 9PM. 9PM!!!!! AND IF YOU SHOW UP WANTING TO PERFORM AT 9:45PM, well that puts us in a weird spot. We will begin instituting a stricter policy this Monday. If that means shorter shows until people “get” it, then okay…

There, said my piece. Now to the fun!

POETRY FEATURE: SARAH Q. MORGAN is a Chicago-based poet whosarahmorgan tours the country performing work from her full-length collection of poetry, Animal Ballistics (Write Bloody Press). Sarah has been published in several literary journals including decomP, Mad Swirl, and Bestiary Magazine. She is a member of the Speak’Easy Ensemble – a spoken word poetry group founded by Marc Smith, founder of the National Poetry Slam. A Pushcart Prize nominee sarahmorgan2and regular voice at the famous Green Mill, Morgan is making a name for herself on the literary circuit, navigating both the page and the stage.

BONUS RUCKUS: Nick’s “SUMMER BLOCKBUSTER or POEM?” Quote Guessing Quiz Show challenge! We’re starting to feel that summer time heat and pollen in the air. It makes Nick think of two things; jumping in rivers and cooling out at the cinema! Forget those french art-house, meta drama think pieces, (Worcester Theaters don’t get those anyways). Nick likes his flicks, loud, arrogant and smashy! Nick’s gonna take famous quotes from summer smash hits and pair them with equally boisterous lines from well known poems. He bet’s you can’t tell them apart. Be the first to guess three correct, prove him wrong and get a prize!

SNACKS will be provided by MIDNIGHT MUNCHIES, or check them out rainyon Milbury Street after you’re outta the bahs! MATT & THE WANKERS (new name) will be laying down the music grooves. ALL HAIL. CONGRATS TO OUR NEW IRON POET CHAMPION RAINY MAPLE! ALL HAIL!!! a well earned victory over longest running champion ROBERT BLACKWELL GIBBS who frankly, has been winning too many things lately (WoMag’s Reader Poll’s Best Poet & 7 Hills Slam Gran Slam Champ). YOSH & MIKEY look forward to seeing you all frollic on the patio this Monday! SUMMER SUMMER SUMMER TIME, LET’s JUST SIT BACK & …. never mind, let’s get cranked up!


Posted in Uncategorized on May 7, 2015 by dirtygerund

Last week, we were outside and it was good! Better than good. If the weather abides, we will be out there indefinitely!

POETRY FEATURE: JOSH KALSCHEUR is the winner of the Four joshkalscheurWay Books Levis Prize in Poetry, selected by James Longenbach. He’s on a short Northeast tour in support of his new book, Tidal. Tidal focuses on Chuuk State, a group of islands that are a part of the Federated States of Micronesia. This focus encompasses Micronesia’s morality, its taboos and myths and how information and stories disseminate between villages, social groups, ethnicities, classes, and genders. Using persona, these poems explore and challenge the idea of witness. Josh lived and worked as a high school teacher in Micronesia from 2007-2009. He’s published individual poems in Boston ReviewSlate, jubilat, Ninth Letter, Witness, Blackbird, The Iowa Review and Best New Poets 2013, among others. A graduate of Saint Olaf College and UW-Madison, he currently teaches classes at both UW-Madison and Madison College in Madison, Wisconsin.

BONUS RUCKUS: IRON POET CHAMPIONSHIP: “GIBBS vs. IronPoetApronMAPLE SUGAR CANDY” – Seems like just last month that RAINY MAPLE SUGAR CANDY took over the #1 contender position. Oh wait, it was last month. Well IRON POET CHAMP ROBERT BLACKWELL GIBBS is riding high off a WoMag’s Poll “Best Poet” Win & Grand Slam Championship for the 2015 & 7 Hills Slam Team Finals. Let’s see if he can keep the winning streak alive versus one worthy competitor. One secret ingredient from chairman YOSH SHARTIN! Three concoctions. Haiku, Short Poem & Incorporation. 3 judges will settle the rest!

SNACKS TASTE EVEN BETTER OUTDOORS! Thanks Em! MATT & LTAB-FlierTHE BASTARDS SOUND EVEN BETTER OUTDOORS! Everything is better outside, except the bugs (must bring community bug spray next week). We’ll have more lights, more action, more open mic, more of all the things you dig about Monday Nights! If you can’t wait for poetry and are down for a road trip to Boston, LOUDER THAN A BOMB MASSACHUSETTS is coming to the South End. 16 youth poetry slams in one day! When Alex isn’t hanging with you guys, he’s helping to organize this! Check the invite! And the rad poster!

Monday May 4th! CCASH POETRY SLAM! $50 Prize – “Bring the Heat” Performance Challenge! Plus! CABLE ACCESS IN THE HOUSE!

Posted in Uncategorized on May 1, 2015 by dirtygerund

So… apparently Worcester Cable Access is looking to do a piece about The Dirty Gerund Poetry Show. They’ll be shooting all night, so dust off them flashy duds and come grab some poetry and suds!

POETRY FEATURE: CASH MONEY POETRY SLAM w/ the BAND! Dirty Gerund needs to reschedule Sarah Q. Morgan, so, we thought we’d celebrate this Sunday’s Seven Hills Team Selection Slam with a next day poetry slam party! Just one hitch. You have to perform two poems with the band! There’s a curve ball for ya! 2 rounds! Winner gets $50, second place gets $20. Third place gets $10! Wow! (need to have 4 slammers in place however) because you never know that the band’s gonna bring to the table, we’re extending the clock to 4 minutes instead of the standard three.

BONUS RUCKUS: The BRING THE HEAT Performance Challenge – We verywasabi well might find ourselves outside this Monday (forecast looking kinda good) so NICHOLAS EARL DAVIS wishes to manifest this heat with our good green friend WASABI! Down a spoon full of everybody’s favorite sushi condiment and do your best to keep your cool through a series of firey haikus. Best performance or best maintainer, wins a prize! Spit hot fire!

SEVEN HILLS POETRY SLAM FINALS THIS SUNDAY! 8 awesome local dirtygerundflier2poets will vie for spots on this year’s 2015 Slam Team, heading to Oakland, CA in August! Come down to the Sahara on Highland at 7pm for an open mic before the main event! Sorry but, MATT & the BASTARDS won’t be on hand to play music (not allowed in poetry slam). YOSH & MIKEY are pondering off season Celtic moves. I’m sure we’ll have an amazing visual artist and snack for ya’ll this Monday! Look MAH! I’m on the T-V! Ooooh! Also, Throwback Thursday flier from back when we had local arts council funding. We’d like to kick things in gear with another flier campaign and NICHOLAS is throwing his money where his cake-hole is! He’s offering $50 for the best flier design. You can download most all info right off this poster (not a lot has changes) we still rock!