Friday, February 13

a way with words

poetry has always been one of my interests every since middle school, but it used to be something i wrote for myself or read in silence in my spare time. and when i thought of modern poetry, i imagined a dark coffee shop with a bunch of people dressed in black and wearing berets, drinking strong coffee, and the poet infront of a brick wall with a bright light illuminating only him or her, and as he or she spoke, someone tapping lightly on bongos. yes, it was this intense. it never seemed to be a reality spoken out loud until about four months ago. i heard my first spoken word artist, who incidently happened to be Mayda del Valle. about a month later i attended another spoken word night at a coffee shop, it was open mic and at the end Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai performed. both full time spoken word artists who tour and both originally from Chicago. i must admit that i haven't been too exposed to spoken word, but from what i have heard, i enjoy it. i can't even describe in words the emotion i feel. it's strange. it's as if for a small moment in time, you are the speaker. you feel, you speak, you express an emotion that is of someone else. it feels to me as if i'm in their shoes. its a mixture of empathy and interest. when the words roll of their tongues and turn into a music that my thoughts can dance to, it's a simple happiness i can't describe. 
not to mention, the topics these two female artists discuss take on a bigger role than just politics and love. they add a flavor to what they discuss. maybe it has to do with their backgrounds or maybe its just how spoken word is. either way, it's catchy and intriguing.
so in the order that i saw them, Mayda del Valle doing, probably her most famous piece, "In the Kitchen". i know this vid is from 2003, she looks different now, but she still performs it with the same 'savor'...

and if you want to know more, her website is
and the second artist i witnessed was Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai performing "Black, White, Whatever". this vid is something she recorded and of course, i loved the editing, so i picked this instead of her performing it live.
and if you want to know more, her website is
plus, i suggest youtubeing them both, because each piece is unique. they each have an individual flow, but it changes with each piece because it's dependent on their creations and emotions.
hope you enjoy the spoken word and i suggest if you are a 'spoken word virgin' to go listen (and snap of course lol) to some at a local coffee shop. and now i leave you, with the famous words of Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai, "One world. One love. Many voices."...


1 comment:

  1. wow, those two are amazing! i wish i had the skill [and courage] to do spoken word.