Literary Event of the Week: Seattle Poetry Slam Sendoff

Seattle's lively slam community has lots of qualities to recommend it. Poets like Elisa Chavez and Troy Osaki are finding great success in both the spoken and written poetry worlds, for instance. Our youth slam community has maybe never been better. And our slam poets win awards on a very regular basis.

But maybe my favorite part of Seattle's slam community is the sendoff party culture that we have. It works like this: whenever Seattle sends a team to represent us in some national competition, the community throws a big party to celebrate the Seattle team's accomplishments and to wish them luck in the fight against other cities. (It's also a fundraiser; it's expensive work sending poets cross-country.) The event is kind of like sports, only there are no concussions and nobody is going to boo you for kneeling for the national anthem.

Seattle traditionally places in the top third of national slam competitions, but this team might go even farther. The four poets representing us in Chicago are io Chanae, Ben Yisrael, Garfield Hillson, and the great Ebo Barton.

This Tuesday night, visit the Royal Room to see the team in action, to get them psyched up for their big poetry fight on the national stage, and to pay for their travel and lodging and beer expenses. It's time to celebrate our community, and to stand up for Seattle artists.

The Royal Room, 5000 Rainier Ave S,, 8 pm, $10.