WBEZ | poem http://www.wbez.org/tags/poem Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Louder Than a Bomb: We Step http://www.wbez.org/content/louder-bomb-we-step <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-April/2011-04-28/thumbnail 2.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="451" src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/23044974?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&amp;color=b30000" width="601"></iframe></p><p>&nbsp;</p><div>At the Taste Entertainment Center on Chicago’s South Side, rows of flashing lights wink on the dance floor and a cluster of shimmering disco balls twinkle above the heads of club-goers. The venue hosts a variety of events - its original name was Taste Disco - but on Friday nights the Taste is the place for steppin’ in Chicago.<br><br>Not to be confused with the rhythmic, percussive style popular with African American fraternities and sororities, Chicago Style Steppin’ is a smooth, down-tempo ballroom dancing style that came to prominence in the 1970s and retains its popularity here, but also in cities with large black populations like Detroit, Atlanta and Washington, D.C.<br><br>WBEZ’s Richard Steele has hosted a weekly stepper’s set at the Taste every Friday night for the last 15 years. People love steppin’ because “you get a chance to style and profile,” Steel says. Meaning, it’s a chance to get dressed up and show off your footwork. The men wear silk ties and three piece suits, the women wear tops that sparkle and gold lamé heels. “Nobody steps in flats,” Steele says.<br><br>Steppin’ also offers the chance to groove to classic tracks with a romantic streak, like Al Green’s <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVzYxqG9N1c">Let’s Stay Together</a> or R. Kelly’s <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nj71KbE6ekg">Step in the Name of Love</a>, songs that eschew the vulgarity of some contemporary hits. “That’s why we call it the after work set for grown folks,” Steel explains.<br><br>Although steppin’ today has a toehold mostly among baby boomers, some younger enthusiasts have gladly taken the torch. Take for example poet Lamar Jordan, 22, who grew up in the hip-hop generation but has old school steppers for parents. &nbsp;For him, the dance culture is synonymous with a kind of Chicago pride that becomes the point of entry for his poem <em>We Step</em>:<br><br><em>This ain't the typical hoe-down<br>you're accustomed to in your town,<br>this is Chi-Town.<br><br>The greatest city in the nation.<br>And steppin' is its physical representation.</em><br><br>Jordan is a former member of the Steimenauts, the award-winning spoken word team from Steinmetz High School whose intense, gut-wrenching final performance steals the show in the Louder Than a Bomb <a href="http://www.louderthanabombfilm.com/">documentary film</a>. To round out our video series celebrating National Poetry month, we asked Jordan to perform We Step at the Taste. And he did, amidst a crowd of regulars cheering him on. You can watch Jordan’s performance, and see his dance moves, in the video above.<br><br>WBEZ is a presenting partner of Young Chicago Authors' Louder Than a Bomb Teen Poetry Slam Competition and Festival. Click <a href="about:blank">here</a>&nbsp;for more information. Special thanks to Taste Entertainment Center and Richard Steele. &nbsp;</div></p> Fri, 29 Apr 2011 22:52:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/content/louder-bomb-we-step Thursday Thingy: Billy Collins Action Poetry http://www.wbez.org/blog/mission-amy-kr/2011-04-28/thursday-thingy-billy-collins-action-poetry-85795 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-April/2011-04-28/billy-collins-action-poetry-collage.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" class="caption" height="475" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-April/2011-04-28/billy-collins-action-poetry-collage.jpeg" title="" width="476"></p><p>Just when I thought Billy Collins' poetry couldn't possibly get any better, this comes along.</p><p>I'd rather not taint your experience with unnecessary intros and blabbing. &nbsp;So here, just enjoy:&nbsp;</p><p><a href="http://www.bcactionpoet.org/">Billy Collins Action Poetry</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>(And let me know if you were able to stop at one, or if you simply had to watch them all.)</p><p>Also, <strong>HIGH FIVES again to Lisa Coughlin and Anna Mangahas</strong> for concepting this week's dazzling mission. &nbsp;Thanks to the plethora of wonderful poems you've all submitted in the comment section, looks like we'll be having ourselves <strong>one super lush POETree!</strong></p><p>yours,</p><p>amy</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><strong>MISSION AMY KR HANDY LINKS:</strong></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/amykr/2010/01/missions-accomplished-the-archive/12696" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);">Mission Archives</a></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://www.whoisamy.com/" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);" target="_blank">Amy's Website</a></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mission-amy-kr/id420630232?mt=8" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);" target="_blank">Download the Mission Amy KR mobile app</a></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/amykr" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);" target="_blank">Subscribe to Mission Amy KR</a></p></p> Thu, 28 Apr 2011 15:21:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/mission-amy-kr/2011-04-28/thursday-thingy-billy-collins-action-poetry-85795 Mission #70 Let's plant a POETree ! http://www.wbez.org/blog/mission-amy-kr/2011-04-25/mission-70-lets-plant-poetree-85646 <p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-April/2011-04-25/Wallpaper-tree.jpeg" style="width: 499px; height: 490px;" title=""></p><p>April = <strong>Poetry Month</strong></p><p>Friday April 29 = <strong>Arbor Day</strong></p><p>So what happens when you put these two celebrations together?</p><p>We are going to plant a big, beautiful <strong>POETree!</strong></p><p><strong>HERE'S WHAT <u>YOU</u> DO NOW:</strong> &nbsp;Share a favorite poem in the comment section. The only criteria is that a) you have to really, really love it; and b) it's probably best if the poem is not super long. &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><strong>HERE'S WHAT <u>WE'LL</u> DO LATER:</strong> &nbsp;We will gather up the poems, transfer them to paper "leaves" which we will then hang from the best public tree we can find. We will document and preserve this magnifcent tree in photos and video, which we'll of course post here later. &nbsp;</p><p><strong>AND FOR ALL YOU ROMANTICS OUT THERE</strong>: If you want to dedicate a love poem (or heck, even write your own original love poem), just include your name and the recipient's name with the poem in the comment section. This way we can include that dedication info in the final video. (and what a surprise for that special someone, right?)</p><p><strong>ONE MORE VERY IMPORTANT THING:</strong> &nbsp;This week's POETree mission is "rooted" in an exchange we had here a few weeks ago, when I asked if anyone had a mission idea they'd really like to see happen. &nbsp;<strong>And so POETree kudos and full credit go to Lisa Coughlin and Anna Mangahas, cherished regulars of this blog.</strong>&nbsp; Thank you so much, Lisa and Anna.&nbsp;</p><p>ANNA MANGAHAS is a newbie AYSO soccer coach, lifetime learner, volunteer coordinator for the best non-profit ever (<a href="http://www.inspirationcorp.org/programs/cafe/cafe.html">Inspiration Corporation</a>) and soon-to-be teacher who likes to cook up trouble in and out of the kitchen. Her favorite bands are&nbsp;<span class="yshortcuts" id="lw_1303747368_5" style="line-height: 1.2em; outline-style: none;">Sly and the Family Stone,</span>&nbsp;<span class="yshortcuts" id="lw_1303747368_6" style="line-height: 1.2em; outline-style: none; cursor: pointer; background-color: transparent; border-bottom-style: none;">Michael Franti</span>&nbsp;and Spearhead. &nbsp;LISA COUGHLIN&nbsp;<a href="http://doughnutdreams.blogspot.com/">makes doughnuts</a> (<em style="line-height: 1.2em; outline-style: none;">not the kind you eat</em>) and dreams up ways she can make the world a happier, more wonder-filled place to be.</p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;">&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><strong>QUICK KEY LINKS:</strong></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/amykr/2010/01/missions-accomplished-the-archive/12696" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);">Mission Archives</a></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://www.whoisamy.com/" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);" target="_blank">Amy's Website</a></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mission-amy-kr/id420630232?mt=8" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);" target="_blank">Download the Mission Amy KR mobile app</a></p><p style="margin: 5px 0px 10px; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.4em;"><a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/amykr" style="text-decoration: none; color: rgb(0, 104, 150);" target="_blank">Subscribe to Mission Amy KR</a></p></p> Mon, 25 Apr 2011 16:05:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/mission-amy-kr/2011-04-25/mission-70-lets-plant-poetree-85646 Louder Than a Bomb: Scaffolding http://www.wbez.org/content/louder-bomb-scaffolding <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-April/2011-04-22/Raven thumbnail.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="338" src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/22757566?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&amp;color=b30000" width="600"></iframe></p><p>&nbsp;</p><div>Raven Hogue says she and her younger brother have dealt with their parents’ divorce in very different ways. Both took to the pen, but whereas Hogue writes poetry, her brother writes graffiti.<br><br>Hogue says her 13-year-old brother has gotten in trouble more than once for tagging. This was part of the inspiration for her poem <em>Scaffolding</em>, in which she describes washing spray paint out of her brother’s clothing and struggling to understand his behavior. “Another fine for our parents to fight over,” she writes, his “fingers are wrecking balls.” &nbsp;<br><br>Her piece is the third in our month-long series of young poets performing their work on location, in honor of National Poetry Month.<br><br>To set the scene, we filmed the 17-year-old Oak Park River Forest High School student performing at a writers’ wall in River Forest, IL. You can check out Hogue’s poem in the video clip above.<br><br>WBEZ is a presenting partner of Young Chicago Authors' Louder Than a Bomb Teen Poetry Slam Competition and Festival. Click <a href="about:blank">here</a>&nbsp;for more information.</div></p> Fri, 22 Apr 2011 22:53:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/content/louder-bomb-scaffolding Local poet discovers writing later in life-and is still learning http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-04-18/local-poet-discovers-writing-later-life-and-still-learning-85329 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/segment/photo/2011-April/2011-04-18/Writing Flickr Graham Binns.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>In honor of <a href="http://www.poets.org/page.php/prmID/41" target="_blank">National Poetry Month</a> <em>Eight Forty-Eight</em> is hearing from local poets. Doris Arrington came to writing in her 50s; twenty years later she’s still going strong.<br> <br> Doris was born in Mississippi and grew up on the South Side of Chicago, where she still lives. She spoke with producer Melissa Townsend about her writing and the story behind one of her very first poems.</p></p> Mon, 18 Apr 2011 14:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-04-18/local-poet-discovers-writing-later-life-and-still-learning-85329 Louder Than a Bomb: High school training ground http://www.wbez.org/content/louder-bomb-high-school-training-ground <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-April/2011-04-15/Malcolm still shot1.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="338" src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/22448349?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&amp;color=b30000" width="601"></iframe></p><p>&nbsp;</p><div>When poet Malcolm X. London spits that “the educated aren’t necessarily the educated,” he’s referring to the inequalities of the public school system. The18-year-old Lincoln Park High School senior argues that our “failing” schools are actually succeeding at what he says is their real purpose: Preparing young people for a future that mimics the problems and contradictions of society as a whole. “My high school is Chicago,” he recites. “Diverse and segregated on purpose.”<br><br>London’s poem, <em>High School Training Ground</em>, was one of several pieces that helped him win impressive accolades at this year’s <a href="http://www.youngchicagoauthors.org/">Louder Than a Bomb</a> competition. London was the top individual performer in 2011, selected from over 700 competitors. His piece is also the second in our month-long series of young poets performing their work on location.<br><br>In honor of National Poetry Month you can check out London’s understated but powerful performance in the video above. And if you missed last week’s homage to Cabrini Green you can watch it <a href="http://www.wbez.org/story/aliyah-oyemade/louder-bomb-remembering-cabrini-green-84897">here</a>.<br><br>WBEZ is a presenting partner of Young Chicago Authors' Louder Than a Bomb Teen Poetry Slam Competition and Festival. Click <a href="about:blank">here</a> for more information. Thanks to Alltown Bus Service for letting us film on their Chicago lot.</div></p> Fri, 15 Apr 2011 22:53:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/content/louder-bomb-high-school-training-ground