July 23, 2019. My first blog post. I enjoy taking part in poetry readings. Participating in readings, reading your poetry aloud to groups, can help you understand your own poetry, see where you might revise, as well as connect you with poets in the community and the community at large. It’s also so much fun. If you are reluctant to share your work in this way, consider practicing and reading an established poet’s work—one you admire. Time your reading in your home and if possible, record your reading and listen to how it sounds, then adjust to improve the delivery. Use all the inflection you would use if you were conversing with someone.
Unlike for a play, you don’t have to memorize for a poetry reading, but you should have a good idea about which words you want to stress on each line and how you want to control your voice and breathing in the change of lines and new sentences and clauses—actually, for every word.
Begin to read your work in a small and supportive group. There are likely many opportunities within your local community. If you are having difficulty finding some, you might contact your local library, adult education programs and theatres.
Poetry reading opportunities at “open mics” are plentiful on the North Shore and Boston and Cambridge. From my home base of Newburyport, you can refer to my poetry page to learn of where I have read. Many guest poetry readings include a closing session with an open mic where those attending can read a poem of up to 2 minutes (this varies) in length. Trust your poem to speak for itself. I hope to see you at the mic soon. Read your poem slowly. Listeners need time to absorb each word you are saying, see the imagery you create. Have fun and best of Luck. Paulette