Perform because you love poetry.

Compete to win.

Perform to be free.

Compete to get qualifiers and make the team.

Perform because it's fun.

Compete to challenge yourself.

Perform. It's all love.

Compete. It's all love.

Enjoy. It's all poetry.


Judges score on a scale of

1 (horrible) to 10 (amazeballs) .

DO NOT BE SWAYED BY THE AUDIENCE. Score each poet by the same criteria, ignoring whatever boisterous reaction your judgement elicits.


Poetry Slam is a competition invented in the 1980s by a Chicago construction worker named Marc Smith ["SO WHAT!"] in which performed poetry is judged by five members of the audience.


Audience, SWAY THOSE JUDGES! Let the judges know how you feel about the job that they are doing, but be respectful in you exuberance; there could be no show without them.