Just in case anyone had the idea that the serious pursuit of excellence in poetry was overtaking the wacky good time vibe at the Seattle Poetry Slam, last night we proudly presented…


Proposed by Seattle slam fam member and comic book mogul Shon C. Bury, Iron Poet is a concept so loosely based on the hit television show Iron Chef, it is almost unrecognizable.
Last night’s shenanigans went down like this:

Round 1

At the top of the show, poets were given note cards with randomly selected “ingredients” created by audience members. I think they included: a place, an activity and an object. Each poet had until the start of the round to write her poem for round 1. Check out this list of competitors.

(I’m pretty sure I have the order mixed up)

1. Christa Bell: haiku for the networks assigned to cover what Obama’s hair is doing.

2. St. Even: so appropriate that Steven got a place called, “Hell, Alaska” great for musing on Heaven. I loved this poem.

3. Mike Reed: I don’t know Mike but liked his poem. Welcome Mike.

4. Dane Kuttler: WELCOME to town DANE!! Seattle scores another young talent and we didn’t even have to bother with a draft pick.

5. Dain Michael Down: I’m so glad Dain is here. Funny poem last night.

6. Matt Gano: Matt should not be talking that sexy about pancakes in public. It was having a measurable affect on the women in the audience. I think the female judge in front of me looked a little syrupy by the end.

7. Morris Stegosaurus: A stunning poem from Morris, although I didn’t write down the content and having trouble recalling today.

8. Hollis Wear: SHOW STOPPER! This was the poem of the night for me. Hollis told a story about a psychedelia-infused road trip to Mexico that involved a boy turning into a house. Oh, I can’t do the poem justice. Just know that it is the kind of work this night was intended to produce. Astounding poem!

9. Sara Brickman: Free writes are one of Brickman’s specialties. It came as no surprise that she produced a gorgeous work on the spot. She really landed her ending.

10. Dennis Whitetail: Dennis Whitetail is not the sort of gentlemen you might expect to see on the slam stage. A straight-shooting, man’s man from Texas, Dennis surprised us all with intimate stories of his time on the farm and his particular affection for chickens.

Round 2

In round 2, poets had to choose a topic on stage and freestyle for at least 2 minutes. I have made it my mission to be positive in this blog, but let’s just call Round 2 a train wreck and be real about it. This hilarious, rambling, bizarre round of “poetry” was proof positive that our particular group of writers should keep working with their pens. Props to Morris Stegosaurus who took the mission seriously and produced an extemporaneous piece about elementary school that made my heart buzz. I hope he wrote some of it down.

Round 3:

The last and most absurd round featured our top three poets in the following contests of will over talent. (tense change for dramatic effect)

1. Morris Stegosaurus is Wrapped in Cellophane before performing his poem. The restriction of his dramatic, skinny-man arm movements foils Morris. He forgets his poem and must start a new poem during the round!

Physical Task #1: Cellophane

Physical Task #1: Cellophane

2. Hollis Wear pulls the dreaded Boots Made of Jello card. Distracted by the extreme squishiness in her toe area, Hollis begins a rambling, jello-related freestyle that is impressive, even up to the on-stage hoe-down at the end.

Physical Challenge #2: Jello Boots

Physical Challenge #2: Jello Boots

3. Dennis Whitetail draws the final physical challenge, Twinkies in the Mouth. After lamenting that the twinkies were not deep fried, Dennis pops one in his mouth and performs the Buddy Wakefield poem “Horsehead.” Ironically, Dennis performs the poem even better than Buddy does and takes home the win.

Physical Challenge #3: Twinkies

Physical Challenge #3: Twinkie

Congratulations Dennis Whitetail. You are the new IRON POET!

Don’t forget y’all: Next week is the last semi-final of the season. Get your GRAND SLAM TICKETS now through ticketswest or bring $15 to the slam and buy one from Daemond with no sur charge.

2 responses to this post.

  1. Thanks for the warm welcome, Karen! It was good to see you last night (and fucking hilarious…)

    It’s Kuttler, by the way. 🙂


  2. Posted by Greg Bee on April 9, 2009 at 11:23 pm

    OMG…last night was so fun. Agreed on the second and third round weirdness, but frankly it warmed my heart a little to see brilliant poets a little outside their comfort zones. Mostly it warmed my heart because it wasn’t me who had to do it, but I’m a big enough man to admit that.

    Dane K – you rocked in a tough room to rock; I can’t wait to hear more from you!

    I was so appreciative of the poets willingness to play along and Hollis was an overall stand out (jello-boot-pun intended).



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