What do they want to know? CSPSlam Book 2


The Current State of Poetry is not only building an industry, it is creating a space for poets to grow, to discover and to walk out of the Joburg Theatre doors at the end of the year ready to conquer the industry.

I had a chat with the Book 2 poets a few hours before the slam. The idea was that I conduct an interview with them, but I thought, as a competition lover, it would be more fun to facilitate a process where they interview each other. In most cases, competitors spend time trying to suss out details about their opponents, so I thought, why not create a space where they can go ahead and ask what they want to know and eliminate the looming elephant in the room.

Here with the questions and answers.

Have you ever passed off someone else’s work as your own?

Xolani: Yes, because every day when I’m working I want to prove my work more than someone.

How many figures of speech or poetic devises do you use in your poetry?

Khanyisa: Uhmm. 3 – 5 depending on the type of poem I’m writing.

What do you guys think of reading and performing a poem during a slam?

Antonio: It’s alright, you’re no less of a poet, your words are not void if you just can’t remember.

How long have you been writing for?

Belita: 8 years

What is your fatal flaw?


Who has read The Artist’s Way and what did they think of it?

Jonny: I have not read it.

Do you share your poetry on social media? If yes, why? If no, why?

Humphrey: Yes, I do for the reaction and to move someone in a mind a spirit level

Have you slammed before:

Soetry: Yes, I have. Only twice.

How does reading and listening to other poets influence you and help you grow?

Adelaide: Listening to other poets has helped me in understanding and learning more about poetry in detail. It has also helped me grow performance wise.

Do you think it’s a good idea to write/perform about personal experiences?

Lebohang: I think its good to share your thoughts on paper, but sharing on stage is a different story. It makes you feel like a transparent poet.

What is the secret you winning a slam?

Refiloe: You! Embodying all your experiences. You the poet are the secret. There is no one like you (duh). You are the universe. Manifest. And the universe has chosen you… Okay I’m going deep

I want to ask you poet. How can you see that it’s a slam?

Thuthukani: Slam poetry is in rounds and there is a prize most of the times.

Apart from you name and skin, what makes you an African?

Qamata: Geography.

Does winning really matter or are we here beyond competition?

Dilan: Yes, although winning does matter, it is not everything. I’m here to learn from other winners.

*Each poet wrote one question they wanted an answer to, threw it into the centre and answered a question picked by a fellow poet.

-Baeletsi Tsatsi


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