Word Around Town Celebrates 10 years with citywide poetry tour

July 31, 2015, by

11014968_978827775475073_8222462771485068992_nThis Sunday, the 10th anniversary season of Houston’s widely celebrated Word Around Town (WAT?!) Poetry Tour begins. The tour features seven straight nights of poetry in seven different venues across the city. The tour will feature 16 of Houston’s top poets and a select nightly feature.

The WAT?! Poetry Tour kicked-off its inaugural launch in the summer of 2006 with 12 poets. The tour’s purpose is twofold: 1) to introduce poets to venues they’ve never been to and 2) to expose audiences to poets they’ve never heard before. This year’s tour features  Kool B, Brother Said, Chris Crawford, Gerald Cedillo, Deep, Corina Delgado, Winston Derden, Marlon Lizama, Tracy Lyall, Jonathan Moody, Joshua Nguyen, Nyne, Bishop Ragtime, Bucky Rea, Roses, and Royal the Poet.

We had a chance to interview Lupe Mendez, Houston writer and one of the lead organizers of the tour.

INPRINT: How long have you been involved with WAT and how has being involved with it shaped you as a Houston writer?

LUPE: I have been one of the lead organizers for the tour for the last 7 years; with this tour, it marks my 8th year as an organizer.  I would say organizing has helped me push the limits of discipline in my own writing time. It’s been a good 5 years since I have held a spot in the line up and so getting to hear such amazing poetry from the featured poets encourages me to sharpen my words, it builds the excitement in my own writing.

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Houston’s Word Around Town 2012

August 14, 2012, by

Houston poets and spoken word artists are in a buzz this week with the Word Around Town happenings. Many of you may already know about this week of poetic fun and some of you may have already attended one of the nightly readings. We asked Inprint friend and local blogger Dean Liscum to give us more details about Word Around Town 2012 and report on some of these readings for us..

What Is It?
The Word Around Town (WAT?!) Poetry Tour is the ONLY 7-day poetry marathon in the country. (And no that’s not Fulshear, that’s the United States of America.) It’s in its 7th year. Lucky 7s. Seeing as life is all a crap shoot, this is the year for poetry in Houston. Organized by Blanca Alanis, Joe B, Stephen Gros, and Lupe Mendez, the tour aims to introduce poets to venues and expose audiences to poets.

What is the format?
The basic format showcases a featured poet, who reads for about 20 minutes. This performance is supported by 15 other local poets, who read 2 poems each. Generally, the featured poet starts the reading followed by 6 or 7 others, a brief break and the rest of the crew. Continue reading