21 Spoken-Word Poems Everyone Must Hear

21 Spoken-Word Poems Everyone Must Hear

Words hold power, and these poems are the must see jems muddled behind the reputation of "hard to understand" poetry.
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These poems are in no particular order because let’s be real, they’re all amazing, and for those of you who want to watch them all but don’t want to look all of them up separately, check out this YouTube Playlist with all of poems on the list. I also included collections of poetry by these very poets if you become a fan, but if you're not loaded with cash like most poetry loving people (sarcasm), feel free to check out the other video alternatives from these poets.


1. Brenna Twohy’s “In which I do not fear Harvey Dent”

This poem is an amazing introduction into the world of Brenna Twohy as her pop culture references and strong voice makes her spoken word refreshing. If you enjoyed this performance, I would recommend her collection of poetry entitled “Forgive Me My Salt”. Make sure to also checkout her other poems, such as the lovely “Anxiety: A Ghost Story” on YouTube or the written ones on her Tumblr.

2. Sabrina Benaim’s “Explaining My Depression to My Mother”

This spoken word gives concrete images to abstract feelings, showing the truth about a mental illness that most never consider. This poem reflects on the challenges of heath and the importance of support via family. Don't forget to listen to her beautiful poem called "Reasons". Sabrina also has a collection of poetry available for pre-order entitled “Depression & Other Magic Tricks”.

3. Kevin Kantor’s “People You May Know”

The words of this poem are heartbreaking and captivating at the same time, them speaking out on their situation warms my heart and their story breaks it. Kevin Kantor is a poet, actor, and activist. Kevin’s poems show strength and the reality of the world. If you enjoy it, make sure to check out their other poems such as “Unsolicited Advice” along with their collaboration poem with Sienna Burnett entitled “Phases”. Feel free to also check out Kevin's chapbook, "Endowing Vegetables with Too Much Meaning".

4. Melissa May’s “Dear Ursula”

This poem speaks to body shaming and the importance of the representation within the media. Melissa May is a youth advocate and strives to fight ignorance through teaching. Make sure to watch "To The Stranger" because it will tug on your heartstrings unless your'e heartless. If you enjoy her shedding light on significant topics though, check out her book called “Sparkle Fat: Poems That Intend To Be Seen”.

5. Shane Koyczan’s “To This Day”

This poem, along with the animation, captures beautifully the issue of bullying and the strong impact of words. Shane’s depiction is spot on, make sure to check out his performance rendition with backstory on TedTalk. Shane also has albums of poetry on his website, including the most recent entitled "Debris". Shane also has physical collections of poetry, check out the one based on this poem called "To This Day: For the Bullied and Beautiful".

6. Dylan Garity’s “Rigged Game”

A National Poetry Slam Champion and a board member of Button Poetry, Dylan’s poem speaks about the importance of education and the struggle of immigration in America. If you enjoy his real world perspective then watch his poem “To Governor Scott Walker” that also sheds some harsh truths about the world.

7. Karina Stow’s “Trigger Warning”

This poem is heartbreaking and the repetition makes it truly stunning. Karina’s poem has so much emotion and intensity that it will give you shivers. This poem really brings awareness to sexual abuse and how culture makes woman feel like society condones it. I couldn't find another poem by her online but all the more reason to honor and respect the one we have, right?

8. Ebony Stewart’s “Monday”

This poem addresses the humor of a worldwide hatred of a day with vigor and connects it with real issues.Ebony is not only a spoken word poet, but she also dabbles in the art of theater with her one-woman stage play entitled “Hunger”. Ebony’s poems “Happy Father’s Day” and “Happy Mother’s Day” are also invigorating and fresh and something worth looking at.



9. Anacristina’s “On being Bilingual”

The vibrate language of Spanglish or hybrid of Spanish and English transform the poem and the depth of the story many want to tell but can't quite find the words to. Anacristina’s words are fast and her telling of struggle is astonishing. Anacristina shows that words are powerful but they can only do damage if you let them. Watch out for her next spoken word, because if this one is anything to go by, it will be amazing.

10. Spencer Brownstein’s “Off-Brand”

The subject of this poem tackles the issue of discrimination and stereotypes about minorities. He speaks with clarity and displays the importance of the right kind of representation. If you enjoy this watch, make sure to listen to his poem “Double Vision” that will give you goose bumps from the chills.

11. Bianca Phipps’ “Almost"

This poem is absolutely amazing as the breakdown of one word changed due to the intensity behind it. This poem almost made me cry, and it hit home with whopping emotions. Bianca’s poem “The Heartbreaker Poem” also breaks the boundaries of emotion and family. If you're a big fan, try to grab her paperback, “White River Happiness”.

12. Rachel Wiley’s “For Fat Girls Who Consider Starvation When Bulimia Wasn’t Enough”

This poem shows the significance of body positivity, and is lyrically beautiful along with a definite tearjerker. Rachel Wiley is not only an activist and poet, but also a staff member of the “Writing Wrongs Poetry Slam”. Make sure to check out her collection of poetry called “Fat Girls Finishing School". If you enjoy her honesty, watch the amazingly true "10 Honest Thoughts on Being Loved by a Skinny Boy" or "The Dozens".

13. Elizabeth Acevedo’s “Hair”

This poem about hair unravels to speak about Dominican immigration and the amount of self- oppression that comes when persecution is all one knows. If you connect with this poem as much as I did, be sure to check out her collection entitled “Beastgirl & Other Origin Myths” and her Tedtalks about presence. Elizabeth's "Afro-Latina" is another awe-inspiring poem and her collaboration with Pages Matam and George Yamazawa entitled "Unforgettable" is a remarkable must-see.

14. Yesika Salgado’s “On Bad Days”

As a co-founder of Chingona Fire, a Latina feminist poetry collective, Yesika’s poems focus on body positivity and her culture. Yesika’s lyrical analysis of her struggle is spectacularly heart wrenching. If her voice captivated you, and it probably did, then I’d recommend listening to her poem “Brown Girl” or read her collection called “The Luna Poems”.

15. Neil Hilborn’s “This Is Not The End Of The World”

The voice of this poem twists dark and breathtaking until it’s woven into beautiful spoken word. Neil Hilborn’s slam poetry always hits home and his topics never falter from the spectacular. If you liked this poem, make sure to watch his poem “OCD” ad "The Future" or grab his bestselling book “Our Numbered Days”.

16. Angelica Maria Aguilera’s “The Disappearing Girl”

The poem spoke about the importance of body image and the lasting thoughts once one gets “better”. Angelica Maria’s “Cinco de Mayo Costume” poem is also stunning because it demonstrates the disrespect of cultural appropriation and how t diminishes the struggle of minorities.

17. Joseph Capehart’s “Fire Escape”

This poem speaks in powerful words and brave statements. It shows the possibility of ending cycles of abuse and the importance of family. Joseph is a nationally touring poet and speaker who’s words pack a tight punch. If you enjoyed this poem, then watch another one of his poems entitled “For My Mom”.

18. Blythe Baird’s “Pocket Sized Feminism”

A poet and feminist, Blythe’s poetry speaks volumes on expectations of women and the worldwide neglect of their equality. Her poem brings up the bystander effect and how women are taught to be silent. If you connect with her words, check out her debut collection entitled “Give Me A God I Can Relate To” or another video of her poem entitled “When the Fat Girl Gets Skinny".

19. Lydia Havens’ “Smart Girl”

The words of this poem are magnificent, and Lydia’s remarks on expectations and the consequences for breaking them will leave you speechless. If you love her work, I’d recommend checking out her collection of poetry called “Survive Like The Water.”

20. Tucker Bryant’s “Oreo”

This poem spoke about discrimination found when one doesn’t follow the path of the stereotype taped onto them. Tucker Bryant’s piece reflects greatly on the struggle of minorities. Tucker’s slam poetry speaks about real issues and gives a voice to those who are slowing losing theirs. If you liked this poem, try to check out another poem of his called “Facts About Myself”.

21. Mercedez Holtry’s “My Blood is Beautiful”

This poem is an amazing breed of words that show the beauty in everyone no matter where they come from. Mercedez Holtry is part of the “Humans of New Mexico” community project. She also strives to be a writer and a mentor. If you enjoy her poem, check out another one of her bests entitled “Trapped Room” or her paperback col ection entitled "My Blood is Beautiful"



I hope you enjoyed this list and maybe you are inspired to write poems of your own. Take a step out of your comfort zone and write one. I'll link my own spoken word poem entitled "Divided We Fall" to let you know that anyone can write poetry if they have the strength to speak their truths. Trust me, if I can do it, so can you. Remember, the person most qualified to write about your struggles, is you.

Cover Image Credit: Poetry Slam Inc

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.
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Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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10 Places From Movies And TV You Can Visit In Real Life

It's like stepping into Hollywood!

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I am constantly so enamored by the world of Hollywood and by going to visit places I have seen on screen. It's always such an unreal feeling to see where my favorite pieces of entertainment were shot. Here are 10 places from some of our favorite movies to see and visit in the real world!

The High School from "10 Things I Hate About You"

If you have ever wanted to dance on the same stairs as Heath Ledger or just stand in the same courtyard as Julia Stiles then you're in luck! Along the water in Tacoma, Washington, Stadium High School is located which was used both inside and out as the high school from one of the greatest teen movies of all time. This school is massive and so beautiful it's almost Hogwarts level stunning.

Pacific Coast Academy from  "Zoey 101"

Growing up I always dreamed about going to Pacific Coast Academy and being best friends with Jamie Lynn Spears and one of those things can (kinda) become a reality! Located in Malibu is a beautiful campus called Pepperdine University and it is the school they used to shoot scenes of Zoey and the gang at PCA. It is a christian based college and is prestigious in it's own right so if unlike me you are smart enough you can live out my dreams.

Central City Police Department from "The Flash"

Have you ever wanted to show up to Detective Joe West's place of work? Well head to the Vancouver City Hall in Vancouver, Canada and you will recognize your surroundings as the Central City Police Department! If you are lucky enough to show up on a filming day, you might even seen the man himself — Barry Allen.

Forks High School from The Twilight Saga

Personally, I am more invested in Bella and Jacob but for all my Team Edward ladies (and gentleman) you can visit the real-life school where Bella and Edward first met and their love blossomed into whatever obsessive weird thing it was. They also used the parking lot at this school to film the infamous scene where Edward saves Bella from getting crushed by a car. The school is called Kalama High School and is located in Kalama, Washington

Max And Dani's House from "Hocus Pocus"

Anyone with taste loves the movie Hocus Pocus — that's just facts! And I have some good news for fans of the film...you can visit the infamous Denison house! Located in none other than Salem, Massachusetts you will find this beautiful home where my favorite siblings once lived.

Silent Hill from "Silent Hill"

I will say before talking about this place that visiting it is EXTREMELY dangerous as just like in the movie the town as been burning from below for years and years. This small town is called Centralia and is located Pennsylvania and has a roaring population of about four people.

Hobbiton from "Lord Of The Rings"

I am personally not a fan of Lord of the Rings but I know a lot of people are so I wanted to include this super cool place on the list. If you ever find yourself in New Zealand you can visit Hobbinton from the movies and spend a day living like your favorite characters.

Platform 9 3/4 from the Harry Potter Series

Now this place will unfortunately be packed with muggles of course but you can find it at King's Cross Station in London! If you are anything like me and are obsessed with these magical movies this is a dream destination just don't run too hard at the wall if you're a muggle it will probably end in a concussion.

East High from the High School Musical Saga

Located in Salt Lake City Utah is the real life East High that was used in the filming of all three High School Musical movies. It is my absolute dream to attend this high school and walk the halls of the greatest high school of all time. They used both the outside and inside and the school so every inch of the school will remind you of these great teen movies.

Gus and Hazel's Bench from "The Fault in Our Stars" 

If you ever wanted to visit the site of this kiss between star crossed lovers you're in luck! Located along a canal in Amsterdam is a bench that is clearly marked by all the fault in our stars graffiti. Recreate this cute picture with your significant other and use a quote from the movie — then you'll just win in life.

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