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CIPS Venue Rep Registration Opens Soon!

Venue Rep Registration opens February 1, 2017, at noon PST and we can’t wait to find out who you’re sending to Vancouver to win the title of Canadian Individual Poetry Slam champion!! If you are the host, or Slam Master of a Canadian poetry slam and are on the list … Continued

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Verses 2017 Artist Application Form

Verses Festival of Words, Canada’s largest alternative literary festival, is back for another fabulous year! In 2017, Verses takes place from April 20th – 30th. The festival includes spoken word, storytelling, poetry, and music. We invite people interested in featuring at Verses 2017 to fill out the Artist Application Form below … Continued

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Festival Passes

Want to come see all of the events at Verses Festival of Words for cheap? Grab a festival pass! It’s your all access ticket to every festival event (except for Masterclasses.) Come see the gamut of greatness being showcased by Canada’s largest alternative literary festival. The full schedule is available … Continued

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Verses Festival of Words Bus Shelter Contest

Hidden in the mists of the coastal city of Vancouver, between UBC Bus Loop and Boundary Road, there are 10 posters for the upcoming Verses Festival of Words displaying proudly in Translink bus shelters. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to take a photo with each of … Continued

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Verses Festival of Words Active Listeners

In spoken word, be it storytelling or poetry, performers often touch on topics that may be upsetting or challenging to the listener. It is important to us at Verses Festival of Words that we not only take care of the performers who share those difficult stories, but also our audiences. … Continued

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Workshops for CIPS Competitors

Attention poets competing in ‪#‎CIPS2016‬ at ‪#‎vs16‬. This year, Verses Festival of Words is providing more professional development opportunities than ever before with five incredible masterclasses from Ivan Coyote, Richard Wagamese, RC Weslowski, Ian Keteku, and Dave Morris. Each of these artists and teachers were selected because of their ability … Continued

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CIPS Competitors 2016

The competitors for the 2016 Canadian Individual Poetry Slam are in, and it’s looking like it’s going to be an incredible year! Below in alphabetical order are the names of the 40 poets who will be competing for the title of Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Champion! Best of luck to … Continued

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Waitlist!

Wow! In a record 6 minutes, Storm Poet spots have filled up for the Canadian Individual Poetry Slam! If you wanted a spot but didn’t get to us in time, never fear! The Verses Festival Planning Committee will be compiling a waitlist! If you’d like to be put on a … Continued

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CIPS Storm Poet Registration

Canadian Individual Poetry Slam (CIPS) Storm Poet Registration Opens TOMORROW (MARCH 1st NOON PST): If you would like to compete in CIPS but are not representing a specific venue or community we applaud your intrepidity and welcome you to the competition. Registration for Storm Poets begins March 1st at noon … Continued

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Venue Rep Registration

Venue Rep Registration opens today and we can’t wait to find out who you’re sending to Vancouver to win the title of Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Champion! If you are the host, or Slam-Master of a Canadian poetry slam and are on the list of registered SpoCan venues, you are … Continued

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Verses 2016 Artist Application Form

Great news! Verses Festival of Words is back for another exciting year! All parties interested in featuring in the 2016 Verses Festival of Words taking place from April 21st to May 1st in Vancouver should fill out the following application form. All artists wishing to be considered should submit the … Continued

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Note Concerning Haiku Deathmatch

Verses Festival of Words would like to extend an apology to those who were adversely affected by last night’s late event at Café Deux Soleils. While we are in full support of people feeling empowered enough to display their bodies in whatever way they feel comfortable, and in no way … Continued

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CIPS Bout Draw Announced

40 of the best poetry slammers from across Canada are converging on Vancouver to participate in the Canadian Individual Poetry Slam at Verses. Many of these are local poetry slam champions, other are poets who are storming the competition through open sign-up. This bout draw shows who they will face … Continued

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Accessibility for the 2015 Verses Festival

Hello festival goers, Our next festival is right around the corner and we are incredibly excited to let you in on all of the wonderful things to come in Verses 2015. One area which has remained a main focus for us, as well as a great learning experience from year … Continued

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Audience Survey for 2014 Festival

The 2014 Verses Festival of Words wrapped just two months ago and the festival team is already hard at work planning for 2015. Last year’s festival was the most successful yet with over 80 artists performing at over 30 events. The last three days were fully sold out, including over … Continued

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Verses Festival of Words Closes with a Slam!

By Maegan Thomas Verses Festival of Words is on now celebrating the transformative power of words: poetic, musical, comedic and all the genres in between and a few not yet invented. “I love that Verses…brings together so many different styles of poetry and such an array of voices and talents.” … Continued

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Finalists Chosen for CIPS 2014

The preliminary bouts are over and from the original field of 40 slam poets, 12 have advanced to the Finals, tonight at The Rio Theatre. The finalists competing to be the 2014 Canadian Individual Slam Champion will be: Andre Prefontaine Dia Davina Dana ID Matthews IF Sir Realist Liam Coady … Continued

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Making a More Accessible Festival

Dear Verses Festival Goers (And Vancouver community members)   If you have not yet seen the event posted, we would like to invite you to come out to Havana Theatre today at 3:00 pm to participate in a community conversation happening around the topic of physical and social accessibility within arts communities. … Continued

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Q&A with the cast of “What Rhymes with LOL?”

By: Maegan Thomas Verses Festival of Words is on April 5-12 on Commercial Drive, the heart – and funny bone – of Vancouver’s spoken word community. They ask the question for the ages What Rhymes with LOL? at at Havana Theatre April 8. Contributors to the recently launched Poetry Is … Continued

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The Verses Festival of Words 2014 Media Round-Up #1

What a week this has been for the Verses Festival – and the party doesn’t officially start until Saturday! Everyone is talking about the festival and tickets are selling like crazy. In case you’ve missed any of the media articles, alerts, and pre-festival attention the events and the artists have … Continued

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Watch this! A new interview with d’bi young!

Get ready to share this will everyone you know! In this latest interview, the incomparable d’bi young talks about art, activism and love. Click here to watch it! Want more d’bi? Better come to the Verses Festival and get your tickets to Sounds Like Fire and the Spoken Word Masterclass … Continued

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Listen to Al Mader on Shout, Clap, Slam!

Vancouver poet Al Mader is no stranger to Verses or the Van Slam family, in fact he is appearing in the “Shut the Front Door” show with a number of other awesome spoken word artists. We know how hard it is to wait until April, so you can get your … Continued

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A(nother) interview with Ivan Coyote!

The good news keeps on coming! We are super excited to share another interview with Ivan Coyote who is part of the duo (with Rae Spoon) that makes up Gender Failure. You can read about it here! If you haven’t bought your tickets for Gender Failure, you can get them … Continued

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Read an Excerpt from Gender Failure!

One of our most highly anticipated shows – Gender Failure – has already been touring festivals for a little while, but Verses is happy to host the official book launch! The festival is only a month away, but if you can’t wait for that, you can click here to read … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Cheryl Maddalena

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Cheryl Maddalena Hails from: Boise, Idaho Best … Continued

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Poets in the Press: Zaccheus Jackson

Check out this great interview of Zaccheus Jackson with Grounded Magazine: “Through that act of attrition by getting up there and just saying those words I made myself accountable to my community. And so I don’t have a shadow of a doubt that spoken word and this community right here, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Zaccheus Jackson

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Zaccheus Jackson Hails from: Vancouver, British Columbia … Continued

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The Verses Festival Bus Shelter Photo Contest!

This year, we are kicking our advertising efforts up a notch with awesome bus shelter ads all around the city! In addition – we are holding a photo contest and the prizes are Verses tickets and Festival Passes!! There are 10 ads in total which will be up starting from … Continued

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Festival Schedule Released!

The moment we’ve all been waiting for is finally here! 8 days and over 80 poets – the BIGGEST Verses Festival of Words  is coming to Vancouver April 5-12th with 34 events. Who’s going to be there, you ask? What kind of events are we talking about? CLICK HERE TO … Continued

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Van Slam Finals

Congratulations to all of our poets who performed last night, and particularly to the 2013 Van Slam team, Floyd, Erin Kirsh, Jillian Christmas, Duncan Shields, and Zaccheus Jackson. One of the strongest Van slam finals of all time. Here, read a recap. Thanks also to our brilliant feature Truth Is, … Continued

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HUSH Magazine: Making a case for slam poetry

Check out this article on slam poetry by HUSH Magazine: Slam Poetry. Performance Poetry. Spoken Word.  Upon hearing these words, you might think of the following: A room full of solemn, mime-like creatures dressed in black berets and turtlenecks. Rhythmic snapping in time with the slow drone of a poet … Continued

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Aaannnnnndddd we’re off!

After much travail and bated breath, the day is finally here! That’s right, the 2013 Verses Festival of Words kicks off tonight with the Vancouver Poetry Slam Finals Night at the Rio Theatre. You can follow along with all the fun on the blog, or you can find us on … Continued

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Word of the week: Furore

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: William Shakespeare

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. Sonnet 100 by William Shakespeare Where art thou, Muse, that thou forget’st so long To speak of that which gives thee all thy might? Spend’st thou thy … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Sheri-D Wilson

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Sheri-D Wilson Hails from: Calgary, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Regie Cabico

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Regie Cabico Hails from: New … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Veda Hille

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Veda Hille Hails from: Vancouver, … Continued

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Word of the Week: Balderdash

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: Al Purdy

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. Listening to Myself by Al Purdy see myself staggering through deep snow lugging blocks of wood yesterday an old man almost falling from bodily weakness — look … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: CR Avery

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: CR Avery Hails from: Vancouver, … Continued

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Word of the Week: Oblige

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: Elizabeth Bishop

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. Argument by Elizabeth Bishop Days that cannot bring you near or will not, Distance trying to appear something more obstinate, argue argue argue with me endlessly neither … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Truth is…

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Truth is… Hails from: Toronto, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Wayde Compton

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Wayde Compton Hails from: Vancouver, … Continued

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Word of the Week: Fraught

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: WB Yeats

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. A Coat by WB Yeats I made my song a coat Covered with embroideries Out of old mythologies From heel to throat; But the fools caught it, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Tara Hardy

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Tara Hardy Hails from: Seattle, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Beau Sia

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Beau Sia Hails from: Los … Continued

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Word of the Week: Absquatulate

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: Elizabeth Barrett Browning

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. Sonnets from the Portugese, XXXVI by Elizabeth Barrett Browning When we met first and loved, I did not build Upon the event with marble. Could it mean … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Mike Mcgee

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Mighty Mike McGee Hails from: … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Ivan E. Coyote

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Ivan Coyote Hails from: Vancouver, … Continued

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Word of the Week: Slake

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: Audre Lorde

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. Making Love to Concrete by Audre Lorde An upright abutment in the mouth of the Willis Avenue bridge a beige Honda leaps the divider like a steel … Continued

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Early Bird Festival Passes ONLY $40!

Early bird festival passes are only $40 till March 7th. Only one hundred of these golden tickets exist in this universe, so buy them quick or regret it (they also make great gifts!).

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Cliffs Notes: Mindy Nettifee

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Mindy Nettifee Hails from: Portland, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: RC Weslowski

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: RC Weslowski Hails from: Vancouver, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Valerie “Queenie” Mason-John

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Valerie “Queenie” Mason-John Hails from: … Continued

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Word of the Week: Moxie

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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Past Tense: Charles Bukowski

A weekly post featuring poems by innovators who continue to inspire the artists who will take the stage at Verses Festival of Words. A Radio with Guts by Charles Bukowski it was on the 2nd floor on Coronado Street I used to get drunk and throw the radio through the … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Lillian Allen

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Lillian Allen Hails from: Toronto, … Continued

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Cliffs Notes: Fernando Raguero

To get you prepped for the onslaught of artistic awesomeness that’s coming your way in April, we’re running a series highlighting our amazing performers. Because you are busy and important, we’ll keep it short. 100 words or less, (almost) everything you need to know. Name: Fernando Raguero Hails from: Vancouver, … Continued

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Word of the Week: Irascible

Every week we’ll be featuring an exceptional, useful, or just plain weird word. Use it to inspire a poem, impress your coworkers, or scare away the person sitting too close to you on the bus.

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CIPS Venue Registration Now Open

Hello poets, Please make sure that your SpoCan venue has registered online by Feb 28th through the following link: http://versesfestival.ca/wp/event/spocan-venue-registration You do not need to have chosen your CIPS rep by Feb 28th. You simply need to register your venue by then. Storm poet registration will open March 1st at … Continued

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No Lecterns Allowed

This ad will appear in the upcoming issue of BC Bookworld. Of course, the point here is not about lecterns themselves. They are noble pieces of stage furniture. The problem is that events featuring writers reading from behind lecterns can feel like church with the preacher proclaiming from the pulpit. … Continued

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Donate to our Beyond Miles campaign

Donate to our Beyond Miles campaign, and help poets get to Verses Festival of Words! In each of the past four years (2009–12), Vancouver Poetry House has spent between $15,000–$25,000 to send local poets to national and international slam tournaments and to bring the best poets in the world to … Continued

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2013 Canadian Indies Registration

Hello poets, if you are interested in participating in the 2013 Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Championships, please read the Indies FAQ. If there are any further questions, feel free to contact Chris Gilpin at hello@vancouverpoetryhouse.com. Venue registration will open on February 1, 2013. It will be $25, payable online through … Continued

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New Festival Name and Dates Announced

After more than 140 entries from 50 different participants, a new name has been chosen for the poetry festival hosted by Vancouver Poetry House each April. The festival will now be called: Verses Festival of Words and will happen next year April 8–13, 2013. The winner of the festival renaming … Continued

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VIPF 2012 On The Way

Wonderful poets and poetry enthusiasts, This is just a tiny reminder about the 2nd Annual Vancouver International Poetry Festival and the 2nd Annual Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Championship this coming April 23rd through 28th 2012. Some of you may note that the festival is later on ion April. This is … Continued

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OpenSecret Stands Above

On April 23rd, 2011, the first Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Championship concluded with its final bout. 32 poets began in this competition, and 12 advanced to finals after two days of preliminary bouts. Those poets were: Sasha Langford, Francis Arevalo, Lucia Misch, Zaccheus Jackson, Mary Pinkowski, Eytan Crouton, Jillian Christmas, … Continued

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Ode to East Van by Libby Davies

Libby Davies, our MP, is not only a fabulous representative for East Vancouver in the House of Commons, but she included a poem in her opening remarks at our festival opening ceremony on Monday. She was met with thunderous applause. Ode to East Van The Drive is awash people, Stakeboards, … Continued

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Day One

So, day one of the Vancouver International Poetry Festival was on Monday April 18 – our opening night show was the always-thrilling Vancouver Poetry Slam Team Finals Night. I spent the day trying to relax, since I was competing in the show that night for a spot on the Van … Continued

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AbeBooks interviews Susan Musgrave

No one can deny that Susan Musgrave has had a very interesting life. Her career as a social misfit began when she was kicked out of kindergarten class for laughing, and sent to the library to contemplate her heinous crime while seated on the “Thinking Chair”. She understood, then, that … Continued

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Festival Poster Released

Duncan Shields here, co-slam master of Vancouver Poetry Slam and graphic designer for the festival. We just got the posters in and they look amazing. I’m really happy with how they turned out. Look for them in your neighbourhood. These make it feel more real, somehow. It’s really happening! This … Continued

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So Much Awesome Not So Far Away

So, it’s not like I’m excited or anything, but there are ONLY 39 MORE DAYS until the launch of the Vancouver International Poetry Festival! Sorry about the all-caps. Didn’t mean to shout. The last week or so, the VIP festival has stopped feeling like it’s sooooooo far away and has … Continued