Wits End Poetry

 

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Send your  poetry events to witsendpoetry@yahoo.co.uk to have your event added.
Established in 2002, Wits End Poetry is the longest running poetry series in South Carolina! 501 (C) 3

 

Say What Spoken Word Every Sunday at Coffee Underground at 7:30pm in Downtown Greenville. [1 E. Coffee Street] Bring your own poems to read or perform. Beginners welcome! Sign-up starts at 7:00pm. All poetry styles welcome! No shows on major holidays as posted. $5 cover (cash/check). Poetry Slam held last Sunday of each month.

Sunday August 28, 2016. Fresh Out the Oven Slam! In this slam, all competing poets can only use poems that have never been read at Coffee Underground (and are presumable NEW!), Host Moody Black. $5 for poets and audience members. Coffee Underground. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

September 4th, 2016 Extended Open Mic Hosted by Moody Black! The night will also feature poetry games, fun, and a full night of open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. Coffee Underground. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

September 11th, 2016 "Say What" featuring El Ja is a spoken word poet from Fayetville, NC. He recently released a CD and frequently tours the south east. Host Moody Black. All poetry styles welcome. Coffee Underground. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

September 18th, 2016 Moody Black host open mic plus a Mr Funn of Atlanta as heard on NPR! This poet and organizer is the slammaster for the Atlanta Slam Team. He is a veteran performance poet who recently organized the 2016 National Poetry Slam in Atlanta, GA. The night will also feature ten open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. Coffee Underground. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

September 25th, 2016. Wits End Poetry $400 14th Year Anniversary Grand Slam with Hosts Kimberly Simms, Moody Black, and Kimbi the Goddess. A poetry slam is a performance poetry competition judged by five randomly chosen members of the audience. Up to 15 regional poets may sign up for the three-round poetry slam. Cost to competitors is $15. The winner of the slam will receive a $400 prize. Coffee Underground. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

October 2nd, 2016 "Say What" featuring Adam Beane(Atlanta, GA) The night will also feature poetry games, fun, and a full night of open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. Coffee Underground. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

October 9th, 2016 Extended Open Mic Hosted by Moody Black! The night will also feature poetry games, fun, and a full night of open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. Coffee Underground. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

October 16, 2016 Moody Black host open mic plus a Nate Mask and Tawny Powell of Atlanta! Don't miss these poetic dynamic duo and their poetry hyjinks! Guaranteed to be a night of amazing poetry! These two have recently been taking the South East by storm from the Southern Fried Poetry Slam Festival to the National Poetry Slam! The night will also feature ten open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday October 23, 2016. Spotlight feature Nell D of Atlanta plus open Mic!

Sunday October 30, 2016 Monthly Poetry Slam hosted by Moody Black. A poetry slam is a performance poetry competition judged by five randomly chosen members of the audience. Up to twelve local poets may sign up for the three-round poetry slam. After the first round, only eight poets will perform in the second round, and only four poets will perform in the final round. Each poet will perform one original poem without musical accompaniment, props, or costumes within the three-minute time limit. They will be judged on a scale of zero to ten with the lowest and the highest scores dropped to give the highest possible score of thirty. The winner of the slam will receive a prize. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday November 6th Poetry Slam Meets Improv! The annual Alchemy New South Comedy Festival is happening November 3rd to the 12th including the weekly Sunday night poetry event! High Energy Poets will share their poetic craft to inspire the art of Improv! Poets will include Moody Black, Kimberly Simms, Johnny C Weaver, I Am Picturesque, Black Phoenix, and more! The night will also feature poetry games and fun! Limited open mic for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. Tickes may be bought online at Eventbrite: $5.

November 13th 2016 "Say What" featuring Queen It Shall Be of Columbia, SC. Queen It Shall Be is a poet and community organzier who brings a unique voice and strong heart to her spoken word. The night also features an open mic. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday November 20 Moody Black host open mic plus feature poet Mathew Foley! Matthew Foley is a spoken word poet and public school teacher in Charleston. In 2014, Matt was voted "Charleston's Favorite Literary Artist" by the readers of Art Mag. He is the co-host of The Unspoken Word poetry series in downtown Charleston and the founder of the Holy City Youth Slam. Matt published his first book of poetry in January of 2014, entitled We Could Be Oceans. The night will also feature ten open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Matt Foley

Sunday November 27th Monthly Poetry Slam hosted by Moody Black. A poetry slam is a performance poetry competition judged by five randomly chosen members of the audience. Up to twelve local poets may sign up for the three-round poetry slam. After the first round, only eight poets will perform in the second round, and only four poets will perform in the final round. Each poet will perform one original poem without musical accompaniment, props, or costumes within the three-minute time limit. They will be judged on a scale of zero to ten with the lowest and the highest scores dropped to give the highest possible score of thirty. The winner of the slam will receive a prize. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

December 4th Extended Open Mic Hosted by Moody Black! The night will also feature poetry games, fun, and a full night of open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

December 11th 2016- "Say What" featuring Devery Broox of Orlando, Florida. Devery Brooks recently took the south by storm with his quick witted, rhythmic verses. He is especially well known for his sexy love inspired poems! Ladies don't miss Mr. Devery! All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday December 18th Monthly Poetry Slam hosted by Moody Black. A poetry slam is a performance poetry competition judged by five randomly chosen members of the audience. Up to twelve local poets may sign up for the three-round poetry slam. After the first round, only eight poets will perform in the second round, and only four poets will perform in the final round. Each poet will perform one original poem without musical accompaniment, props, or costumes within the three-minute time limit. They will be judged on a scale of zero to ten with the lowest and the highest scores dropped to give the highest possible score of thirty. The winner of the slam will receive a prize. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday January 8 Extended Open Mic Hosted by Moody Black! The night will also feature poetry games, fun, and a full night of open mic slots for local poets on a first come, first serve basis. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday January 15. Featuring the 2016 Upstate Slam Team: D. Dove, Trez the Truth, Bittersweet, Moody Black, and Jahbu! Don't miss this chance to see this dynamic group of poets who finished 4th at the Southern Fried Poetry slam, and made it to semi-finals at the National Poetry Slam!

Sunday January 22. Feature poet Kimberly Simms. Kimberly Simms is the founder of Wits End Poetry as well as a NPS Legend of the South. She is a former Southern Fried Poetry Slam Champ, as well as a veteran of over 5 slam teams. Coach, organizer, and poet, Kimberly Simms was the 2016 Carl Sandburg Writer in Residence. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Sunday January 29 2017 Annual Grand Slam to Pick 2017 Say What Slam Team hosted by Moody Black. A poetry slam is a performance poetry competition judged by five randomly chosen members of the audience. Up to twelve local poets may sign up for the three-round poetry slam. After the first round, only eight poets will perform in the second round, and only four poets will perform in the final round. Each poet will perform one original poem without musical accompaniment, props, or costumes within the three-minute time limit. They will be judged on a scale of zero to ten with the lowest and the highest scores dropped to give the highest possible score of thirty. The winner of the slam will receive a prize. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

WINTER/SPRING 2016 IS BOOKED BUT WILL BE REALEASED IN DECEMBER 2015.

Sunday July 30 2017 HEAD TO HEAD HAIKU SLAM. Poetry Slam hosted by Moody Black. This fun haiku poetry competition is open to all. Poets should bring 7 or more haiku to enter the competition. The winner of the slam will receive a $100 prize. The night will also feature a short open mic. All poetry styles welcome. 1 East Coffee Street. Greenville, SC 29601. 7:30pm. $5.

Haiku

Our Venue: Coffee Underground

Coffee Underground

Coffee Underground is a locally owned coffee house & cafe specializing in freshly made desserts & coffee roasted on premises.

They have a great dinner menu as well as a full bar in additional to smoothies, vegetarian food, and specialty drinks!

Located at the corner of Coffee & Main, they are nestled only twelve steps down from our neighbor, Ristorante Bergamo.

1 East Coffee Street, Downtown Greenville, SC

 

Book Spoken Word Poetry at your next event!

Do you need spoken word poets to liven up your next event? Poets are available to share poems on most themes whether it is a social activism event, a school visit, a literacy awarness event, a workshop, a celebration of an historical event, or just a fun night of live entertainment.

Some events may even qualify for support from the SC Arts Commission or the SC Humanities Council's Speakers Bureau which provides funding for Kimberly Simms to provide a workshop, talk, or presentation to your group or school.

Kimberly Simms

Please email witsendpoetrysc@gmail.com for details on types of poets available, pricing, and event support.

Love and Laughter

 

Art on the Trail “Poetic Journeys”
Poetry Prize

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TRAVELERS REST, S.C. – The Travelers Rest Artists Alliance and Wits End Poetry announced their first annual “Poetic Journeys” Poetry Prize as part of the 2016 Art on the Trail festival. The annual event will be held the third weekend in October in Travelers Rest and will feature fine arts, fiber arts, sculpture, photography, live music and performers, poetry, children's activities, and more. Thank you to Dr. Jill Coyle for acting as final judge for the adult category. Kimberly Simms organzied the competition and acted as final judge in the youth category.

Special Thanks to our prize sponsors:

Wits End Poetry, The TR Arts Alliance, Hub City Press, The Emrys Foundation, and Becky Stone of Thirty-One!

Winners Announced!!! Adult Category:

First Place: Joel McCollough for his poem "Binding" 

Second Place: Bobbie Jean Shepard for "Fruits"

Third Place: Tricia Kyzer for "Landslide"

HM: Elaine C. Hill for “Jump Off Rock”

winners of the poetry contest

Adults: Adults over 18 residing in the Upstate region may submit up to 3 poems using the online submission manager at https://witsendpoetry.submittable.com/submit. There is no reading fee for poems submitted before September 1st. Student guidelines are also available at:
https://witsendpoetry.submittable.com/submit

Student Category:

First: Sophie Young. Green Charter School. 8th grade. “Untitled” Teacher: Lauren Lehman

Second: Miriam Muriithi. League Academy. 8th Grade. “Mountains on my Mind” Teacher Allison Franke

Third: Grace Brockman. 7th Grade. League Academy. ”Mountains” Teacher Mrs. Ritter.

HM: Loren Bell. League Academy. 8th Grade. “Mountains on my Mind” Teacher: Frank Powell

HM: Jasmine McCarroll 12th Grade. Berea High School. “Mountains” Teacher Mrs. Tisdale

 

 

 

Thank you to Wits End Poetry's supporters:

This program is funded in part by the Metropolitan Arts Council with funds received from the City of Greenville, BMW Manufacturing Company, Michelin North America, Inc., SEW Eurodrive and the South Carolina Arts Commission.

WitsEndPoetry is a 501C3 Charity
(since 2002).
Wits End Receives Travel Grant from SouthARTS!

Wits End Poetry received a travel grant to send their Executive Director Kimberly Simms and their Artistic Director Moody Black to the National Poetry Slam for the week long conference and festival in Decatur, GA.

Wits End Poetry's leadership received invaluable training in upcoming trends, new rules, the #ILLGOWITHYOU campaign, and other accessiblility issues. Wits End Poetry will be booking its 2017 season from poets we experienced in showcases at the National Poetry Slam.

This attendance of the National Poetry Slam was funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the SC Arts Commission.

Donations: Please support our new scholarship fund to send poets into local classrooms!

Sponsor a Poet to Visit a School!

For every $100 raised we can provide a scholarship for 1 poet to visit one school for one classroom visit! For $250, the poet can visit 4 classes in one day! Additional donations allow us to sponsor visits to poetry clubs, library performances, and community performances.

These sponsorships come with a community recognition package that includes advertising supported by our Google Adversing Campaign!

Sponsorship Levels

The 2016 Upstate Slam Team

The Say What Upstate Slam Team finished in the top four and appeared on finals stage at the Southern Fried Poetry Slam which featured 33 teams from across the South East including Texas, Florida, and beyond. The event was held in Greensboro NC and was filmed by Button Poetry.

The Say What Slam Team recently finished 15th out of 72 teams at the National Poetry Slam. They competed in the Semi-finals with the top 20 teams in the nation! We are so proud of these local poets!

The 2016 Upstate Slam Team features Bittersweet, Jahbu, Trez the Truth, and De Dove. Bittersweet is the 2016 Upstate Grand Slam Champion as well as the 2016 Queen of the South Co-Champion. She is a veteran member of the Upstate Slam Team. Jahbu is originally from Alabama and has been a member of the Bama Slam Team and the Charlotte Slam Team. Trez the Truth is a spoken word poet, father, and lives in Clemson, SC. De Dove is an educator, poet, and actor who lives and works in Greenville, SC.

The team will travel to the South East Regional Southern Fried Poetry Slam in June 2016 in Greensboror SC to compete against 32 South Eastern Teams. In August, the team will travel to Atlanta to compete against 72 slam teams from across the country.

National Poetry Slam Logohttp://npsdecatur.com/

What Is a Poetry Slam?

Simply put, poetry slam is the competitive art of performance poetry. It puts a dual emphasis on writing and performance, encouraging poets to focus on what they're saying and how they're saying it.
A poetry slam is an event in which poets perform their work and are judged by members of the audience. Typically, the host or another organizer select the judges, who are instructed to give numerical scores (on a zero to 10 or one to 10 scale) based on the poet's content and performance.

The National Poetry Slam is the annual slam championship tournament, wherein four-person teams from all over North America and Europe gather to compete against each other for the national title. It has become part Super Bowl, part poetry summer camp, and part traveling exhibition. Staged in a different city each year, the National Poetry Slam has emerged as slam's highest-profile showcase.

Participants
Generally, you may sign up for a poetry slam at the door on the night of the slam. But some big money slams may require advanced reqistration. Though everyone who signs up has the opportunity to read in the first round, poets may be eliminated based on judges' scores. In other words, the judges vote for which poets they want to see more work from.

NPS is held annually in August in a different city each year.

Want more information about Poetry Slam? Check out this resource of performance tips, rules, and history:

http://www.witsendpoetry.com/whatisslam.html

Wits End Poetry Staff

Executive Director Kimberly Simms

Kimberly Simms Gibbs

To Book Kimberly please email witsendpoetrysc@gmail.com.

Kimberly Simms is the founder and director of nonprofit Wits End Poetry. She is currently the 2016 Writer in Residence for the Carl Sandburg National Historic Site. She attended her first NPS in 1997 as a member of the first all women slam team from Greenville, SC. In 1998, her Greenville team won the Southern Fried Poetry Slam. She spent the next three years living and performing poetry in London before she returned to Greenville in 2002, at which time she founded non-profit Wits End Poetry and the Upstate, SC Slam Team.

She was a competing member of six National Slam Teams and coached seven teams. In 2004, Kimberly was the festival director and organizer of the first ever World Poetry Slam held in Greenville, SC. She was on the Executive Council of PSI from 2005 to 2007, during which time she pitched the concept of an all women slam competition on a national level. In 2006, she had organized the first annual women only southern regional slam entitled The Queen of the South Slam.

In 2014, her non-profit Wits End Poetry organized the Southern Fried Poetry Slam in Greenville, SC. She is currently co-slammaster of the Upstate Slam Team which recently finished fourth at the Southern Fried Poetry Slam. She continues as director of Wits End Poetry, an arts integration specialist with the Metropolitan Arts Council, and a member of the SC Humanities Council’s Speaker's Bureau. Over sixty of her poems have been featured in a variety of literary journals and anthologies including From the Page to the Stage, Growing up Girl, The Asheville Poetry Review, and many more. You can learn more about her at www.kimberlysimms.com or connect with her on twitter @

www.kimberlysimms.com

 

Co-Artistic Dirctor Moody Black

Moody Black

Moody Black oversees grass roots promotion and event coordination, as well as serving as the 2016 Slammaster. He is a frequent Sunday night host. Moody Black is also a teaching artist with the Metropolitan Arts Council's SMART Arts Program. Moody Black is a spoken word poet, rapper, emcee, actor, artist, and photographer. He studied business and theater at University of South Carolina, Spartanburg.He studied business and theater at University of South Carolina, Spartanburg.

Co-Artistic Dirctor Kimbi The Goddess

Kimbi

She has been the Co-Artistic Director of Wits End Poetry since 2009 and is a talented spoken word artist. In this capacity, she manages the event planning for the Sunday night series “Say What” Open Mic at Coffee Underground every Sunday night. Kimbi Mullins has been a yogini since 1999 and is the founder of the weekly Gumbo Yoga in Greenville, SC. She is a life coach and inspirational speaker as well.

Board Member and Sound Director: Black Phoenix is a spoken word artist and Regional Haiku Champion. He is a long time volunteer, team member, and host of Sunday nights at Coffee Underground.

Black Phoenix