Gardiner in general.
"The point is to have fun. Some people get acting coaches and spend a
lot of time and money working on their poetry performance," he said. "So
as with any competition human nature comes into play. Poetry is supposed
to be fun."
The scores also often fail to reflect the quality of the written poem.
"There's a dichotomy of poetry readings -- the page poets and the
performance poets -- however a poem needs to be able to strand on its own
two legs," Gardiner said.
SLAM'S origins can be traced back to the beatniks at coffee houses,
bookstores and art galleries in places like San Francisco's City Lights
Bookstore, where Allen Ginsberg and other poets had readings with a
At next week's anniversary reading the spirit of change remains alive.
"The feature is Murray and they are a "garage jazz/spoken word band,"'
Gardiner said. "They have a full set up and will be doing spoken word
instead of singing their words."
The Laguna Poets formed more than 20 years ago in Laguna Beach and are
still California's longest running weekly poetry series.
"For me, I still consider the Laguna Poets to be my spiritual home. I
started going to their readings on a regular basis about 15 years ago,"
The Laguna Poets meet the first three Friday nights of the month at
Wells Fargo in downtown Laguna.
Beth McIlvine has been coming to Laguna Poets since she was 14 years
"It's always been a well-known staple in the poetry community and it
still is," the 22-year-old said. "The Laguna crowd is a more literary and
One poet at the Laguna Poets reading recently summarized the
everlasting impression Laguna has on its community.
"The poem that I am reading is called 'Carpool Coma' but it should
have been called, 'Why did I ever leave Laguna?" said the poet, Diane