Of all the performers that take the stage I believe spoken word artists to be the bravest. No guitar to hide behind, no chorus to encourage the audience to tap their toes and sing along. Naked words conveyed directly from the poet to the listener.
Thursday night I attended Wordfest, a twice a year celebration of poetry and spoken word that has been happening in Elora since 2007. Hosted by writer Donna McCaw, the event attracted a wide range of ages and experience levels. From sentimental to intellectual, nervous neophyte to astonishingly great performers (thank you Harry from Caledon!), simple reading to multimedia presentation, there were many styles and personalities represented. While most read or performed their own work, some read from other authors.
I usually participate in the events I describe, a way of engaging in the adventure. But tonight I knew my place: in the audience. I tip my hat to the courage of the poet.
[Wordfest, Elora Centre for the Arts, 75 Melville Street, Elora, twice/year:
next event is April 2012; contact the Centre for more details]