Stand up and say it

HARARE - The House of Hunger Poetry Slam is an initiative to commemorate the life, works and inspiration of Zimbabwe's controversial writer, Dambudzo Marechera who died in August 1987. It started last August at the Book Café and brings together young performance poets from

all parts of Harare. The youth seem to respond to the dictum: if you think you have something to say, stand up and say it.
On the first Saturday of every month the Book Café swarms with up to15 poets ready to slam heir thoughts into the microphone. At the end of the day, the poet with the most points is declared ‘the lucky poet’. The slam is less about competition and more about cooperation and community.
Poets freely speak their minds and dreams. Themes are diverse – money matters, love, politics, prostitution, relationships. There are no language restrictions.
The stage names of the poets are literary metaphors communicating other messages – Police State Poet, Confused, Godobori, Poetic Angel, Lucius, Comrade F, My Brother’s Keeper, Rebel Poet, Outspoken. What is also particularly uplifting is that a significant number of female contestants take part in the slam.
The House of Hunger Poetry Slam initiative was born out of the successes and popularity of the Spoken Word segment introduced at HIFA 2005 under the directorship of Chirikure Chirikure. To date it has received support from Weaver Press, Prestige Books, Pamberi Trust, Venekera Works and Klear Kut Entertainment. Renowned poet and patron of the slam, Chirikure Chirikure has also donated some of his books to the slam. – The House of Hunger Poetry Slam is on the first Saturday of every month from 2-6pm at the Book Café, Fife Ave, Harare. Admission free.

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