Metrical Youth – Youth Slam

11 May
Swindon Festival of Literature Youth Slam

Swindon Festival of Literature Youth Slam

Those pesky kids, you know, the ones who hang around by the bus shelter, wearing hoodies and talking to each other, those ones, well they’re great! Ample evidence of this was on display at the ninth Swindon Youth Slam hosted by Marcus Moore and Sara-Jane Arbury. A hotly contested, noisy, dramatic and brilliant word battle saw teams such as ‘Bros of a school nobody knows’  lock pentameter with ‘The Glam Girls and Jimmy’ to inventive and innovative poetic effect. Themes covered showed just what poetry can do to express problems, delight and confusion. Madness, self harm, homophobia and teenage boys’ scab eating habits all got an airing. Even that most difficult of poetic conundrums got a look in – ‘the nothing rhymes with orange problem’, well at Swindon Festival of Literature ‘syringe’ most certainly does! As the finalists prepared to unleash their well oiled words, Marcus Moore reminded everyone that it was Swindon schools taking part and lamented the absence of an influential guest as he said, ‘if only the education secretary was here to see what we’ve managed to achieve’. First place went to the aforementioned ‘Glam Girls and Jimmy’ with their keenly observed poem on the inside of the mind of a teenage boy (hence the scabs). Their funny and precise performance saw them secure the number one spot for Commonweal School. Odyssey from Swindon Academy took second spot with a Shakesperian sonnetesque piece of love angst containing the killer line ‘stop wasting your time your mate is fitter.  Kids at bus stops crafting sonnets hashtagging ‘ I love you’ on Twitter, the future’s bright and it might rhyme with orange.

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