Poetry comes in many different forms and genres, but my favorite by far is spoken word poetry.
The way someone can turn words alone into a performance is absolutely stunning to me, and I often find myself watching videos of these poets for hours at a time. When you write a poem you create a piece of art, when you perform a poem you are the art. If you haven't already, you absolutely have to watch these.
1. Neil Hilborn -- "OCD"
"I just think about who else is kissing her. I can't breathe because he only kisses her once. He doesn't care if it's perfect."
2. Sabrina Beniam -- "Explaining My Depression To My Mother"
"I'm not afraid of the dark. Perhaps that's part of the problem."
3. Belissa Escobedo, Rhiannon Mcgavin, and Zariya Allen -- "Somewhere In America"
"Maya Angelou is prohibited because we are not allowed to talk about rape in school. We were taught that just because something happens doesn't mean you are to talk about it."
4. Tova Charles -- "Suggestions From A White Feminist Poet"
"If you are offended, it is about you."
5. Olivia Gatwood -- "Alternate Universe"
"A boy told me he liked my hair the other way, so I shave my head instead of my pussy."
6. Rachel Wiley -- "10 Honest Thoughts On Being Loved By A Skinny Boy"
"I say, 'I am fat'. He says, 'no you are beautiful'. I wonder why I cannot be both. He kisses me, hard."
7. Guante -- "10 Responses To The Phrase 'Man Up'"
"Boy babies get blue socks. Girl babies get pink socks. What about purple? What about orange? What about green?"
8. Blythe Baird -- "Girl Code 101"
"13, the year dad says wearing short skirts in the city is like driving without a seatbelt."
9. Melissa Lovada-Olivia -- "Black Thong Underwear"
"What is the word for being lucky enough to turn something down? What is it mean if you don't care where your heart is as long as there is money in your savings account?"
10. Olivia Gatwood -- "Ode To The Women On Long Island"
"One more thing: when they call you a birch say thank you. Thank you, very much."
11. Tucker Bryant -- "Facts About Myself"
"I'm only 5'8". . . on a really good day. But being built like a short story is a lesson in finding other ways to be the tallest tale in the room."
12. Dylan Garity -- "Friend Zone"
". . . As if the only reason to be a good friend or a decent fucking human is if you get something in exchange."
13. T. Miller -- "The Difference Between A Girlfriend And A Woman"
"A girlfriend will compliment your outfit. A woman will compliment your whole existence."
14. Nayo Jones -- "Healing"
"Loving you is taking all the love I could not give myself and putting it to good use."
15. Katie Makkai -- "Pretty"
"'Will I be pretty?' I will wipe that question from your mouth like cheap lipstick and answer, 'No the word pretty is unworthy of everything you will be and no child of mine will be contained in just five letters."
16. Megan Falley -- "Fat Girl"
"Fat girl doesn't hate her body, fat girl hate the world. Fat girl fat mouth. Fat girl fatter fists. Fat girl fuck you!"
17. Steven Willis -- "How The Hood Love You Back"
"I'm not saying that I agree with what they did. Just saying I've learned not to judge a people for how they grieve.Learn not to judge the hood for how it loves you back."
18. Lily Meyers -- "Shrinking Women"
". . . And I wonder if my lineage is one of women shrinking, making space for the entrance of men into their lives. Not knowing how to fill it back up once they leave. I have been taught accommodation."
19. Sara Kay -- "If I Should Have A Daughter"
". . . But I want her to know that this world is made out of sugar. It can crumble so easily, but don't be afraid to stick your tongue out and taste it."
20. Shasparay Lighteard -- "Black Girl Magic"
"Go ahead, touch my hair without permission, but don't be surprised when my kitchen cuts you."
21. Patrick Roche -- "21"
"15. I come up with a theory that my father started drinking again because maybe he found out that I'm gay. Like if he could make everything blurry maybe somehow I'd look straight."
22. Franny Choi -- "Whiteness Walks Into A Bar"
"Whiteness, you are a bad joke everyone is too uncomfortable to laugh at."
23. Jeanann Verlee -- "40 Love Letters"
"Dear Miguel, you said a man never forgets his first redhead. What color are my eyes?"
24. Thadra Sheridan -- "Waiting"
"I'm sorry did they not cook that quite right? Did you want me to maybe have your mom come in and cut your toast into little bunny shapes? Would that help?"
25. Bianca Phipps -- "Almosts"
"But I do know I have poured over our conversations searching for the secret message you certainly tried to send me and I am sorry, but I only almost found it."
26. T. Miller -- "10 Things You Sound Like When You Say All Lives Matter In Response To Black Lives Matter"
"7. I say black lives matter, you say you don't see color. 8. I say Dallas, you say blue lives matter. I say I thought you didn't see color?"
27. Talia Young -- "The Virgins Lament"
"I'd rather be alone than alone in your arms."
28. Jenesis Fonseca -- "The Way To A Woman's Heart"
"The say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. There is no proverb about the way into a woman's heart. The way into her is more important."
29. Thadra Sheridan -- "Eggs And Toast"
"I'm afraid to buy toilet paper. Who knows, next week we'll probably find out they squeeze live baby sheep to make it."
30. Dylan Garity -- "Rigged Game"
"improving a school by picking its pockets is like tuning a guitar by ripping off its strings."