This is a new series at Francesscas Cafe during Troy Night Out, run by poet D. Colin. But before most of the poets arrived a neighborhood regular, Dan Schultz, stepped up to improvise a tune on an Irish tin whistle. Meanwhile other poets wandered in for the open mic, including some of the local residents, glad to have another poetry open mic to go to.

Our lovely host D. Colin started off the night with the ironic poem, “I’m Not a Slam Poet” (because she is a member of Albany’s Nitty Gritty Slam Team), then the wonderful hymn “Haiti, I Never Left You.” I was up next with 2 urban poems, “Morning Photo” & a poem about a chance meeting, “City Life.” Kevin Peterson wandered in a bit late, but I guess #2 was open so he jumped right in with a piece about a confrontation with a cop “The End of the Dream” then on to one of his popular slam pieces, the hangover, drink recipe poem, “Sunday Funday.” Nancy Klepsch (my co-host at the 2nd Sunday at 2 open mic at the Arts Center) started off with her “P-town Poem” then took us back to the thrilling days of yesteryear graphics with “Rubilith As a Revolution.”

Maria (Diotte) is a poet who has surfaced recently & tonight stepped boldly into performance poetry with her conga player friend Kristen with a piece about a date, “Birds & Bees.” Bless, on the other hand has been around a while, & began with a performance of a poem about sitting down to write, how the poem must come from the heart, then the familiar traffic jam piece with its sad, chilling ending. Thom Francis began with another familiar piece, “Paper Messiah,” then a piece never read before, on a similar theme, “Saving the World.”

“I’m not a closet poet, poetry wears me out,” said D. Colin before her singing her piece about Haiti after the earthquake, still here & still strong, then on to a piece with the refrain “I cry for the …” like, little black girls on the street corner.  So just when the open mic list ran out, in strolled a couple more members of the Nitty Gritty Slam Team to keep the night rolling. ILLiptical performed a poem about the Inquisition, “The Last Jew in Spain.”

Then Algorhythm practiced a new piece in English & Japanese, “Black Man’s Search,” followed by a challenging piece down from memory, alphabetical alliteration taken to the extreme.

Apparently there was a featured poet “on the way” but by 8:30 he hadn’t arrived & all the open mic poets had read so I split. Who needs a feature when the open mic poets are so good?

7PM, Francesscas Cafe at the corner of Broadway & 5th street, Troy, on the last Friday of the month (i.e., Troy Night Out). (Note: tonight, by 7PM no one had arrived to set up, put out the sign-up sheet, schmooze, what we poetry hosts do, so be prepared for a late start.)