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Electric Poetry: Phire Free

Phire Free is an artist, poet, event host, model, and student. She was born in Detroit, Mi and was raised in the Metro Detroit. As a poet she has lent her talents to different projects including musical collaborations with numerous artists. She has also worked with Non-profit agencies such as Catholic Charities in Michigan and has been a guest poet for Western Michigan University's Suicide Prevention Awareness Program. She was able to feature for the Ned Foskey Poetry Prize Reading for Kalamazoo Valley Community College. Most recently she was a featured poet for "Spring is in the Hair" Hair show and has been able to be a feature artist for Grand Rapids own LINC First Fridays. (facebook.com/freephire, you can also tweet and follow on twitter and Instagram @freephire and also hear her recordings at http://soundcloud.com/phirefree/tracks and hear some spoken word at http://www.archive.org/details/ElectricPoetry-Phire as well as her interview with Grand Rapids Olive on Electric poetry on grcmc.org/radio.) For Booking and contact you can email her at: phirefree@gmail.com.

Electric Poetry: KT Herr

KT Herr is a transplant to Michigan from the east coast of the U.S., where teachers and mentors encouraged her interest in poetry and music from a young age. In 2007, she graduated with a B.A. in English, concentration in creative writing, from Smith College, where she was the recipient of the Ruth Forbes Elliot poetry prize (2005) and the Rosemary Thomas poetry prize (2007). A musician and poet in equal measure, KT enjoys exploring the likenesses and distinctions between the two forms of expression. This year, she looks forward to dedicating more of her energy to creative pursuits. Her new blog will soon be up and running at herrstories.wordpress.com.

Electric Poetry: Talia Fulks

Talia is a Chicago-Land native who has called Grand Rapids home for the better part of a decade. She graduated from Grand Valley State University in 2009 with a B.A in Writing, focusing on Poetry and Short Fiction. She has worked as an editor for both Seven Locks Press and The Forum Press. She enjoys discussing poetry just as much as writing and performing. But, in more important credentials, she's quippy, quirky, and super Jewish. Talia's voice has also been known to incite riots at the drop of a single syllable.You can find her often neglected blog at artisticjunkie.wordpress.com. She also performs at The Drunken Retort on the very rare occasions that she doesn't have to adult the next day.

Electric Poetry: Amanda Zerilli

Those who inspire have always been my every day heroes. I can still recall the first time I heard spoken word. I was sitting in my girlfriend's parents house, leaning into her desktop, watching Otep Shamaya do a slam piece titled 'Dedicated to My Enemy.' It was visceral and shocking. She owned her history in such a way that it was empowering to watch. In the last year I have owned my history, breaching topics on foster care, family dynamics, body image, and domestic abuse. I spoke at a Suicide Awareness fundraiser alongside the Diatribe, and had the pleasure of opening our 2015 Ladyfest festival. The Drunken Retort has transformed me. I went from a paper shaker and nervously saying sorry, to finding my voice and hearing people whisper, 'I love her.' That is humbling. That is progress. And this is only the beginning of my journey.

Electric Poetry: Rachel Gleason

Rachel Gleason is a poet and musician whose poetry is often an interaction between religious symbolism and contemporary observation, woven together with vivid imagery and word play - and is brought to life through her truly original and engrossing performance style, which combines a sharp but understated humor with a charisma born from her early gospel/evangelical influences. She is also a singer/songwriter with a powerful, unique voice. In addition to performing and co-hosting The Drunken Retort, she also works with the youth in high schools through out the state as a member of The Diatribe collective

Electric Poetry: Brianne Ross

Brianne Ross (Bri to most), is an up-and-coming poet living in Grand Rapids. New to the artform, she got her start at The Drunken Retort, hosted at Stella's. In April 2015, she shared her poetry at the annual LadyFest GR, some of her pieces can be found on Youtube.com. Speaking in front of crowds was never a new thing, but sharing her poetry has given her a sense of responsibility-To encourage others to share their work and shed light on issues that make most cringe and search their own comfort levels. Taking on subject matters about race, sex, domestic violence and drug addiction, she manages to be forthright and unapologetic with her content. Read more of her work at www.sportsontherocksnroll.com

Electric Poetry: Alex Beecroft

Alex Beecroft, aka Thought, was born in the foothills of Appalachia and moved to the Great Lakes when he was 11 or 12. He believes poetry to be a medium through which people can articulate and craft the art of declaration, self-expression, and understanding. He collaborates with musicians, artists, performers, actors, builders, and humans galore to create pockets of Imagination in the world. He hopes the seeds sown by these pockets can grow into a fruit for each life that learns how to be fearless and play.

Electric Poetry: Kelsey May - 2015-06-23

West Michigan poet Kelsey May shares three new pieces on WYCE's Electric Poetry. Kelsey May is a poet from Grand Rapids, Michigan and currently attends Grand Valley State University where she majors in Writing. She lived on-and-off in Washington, D.C. over the course of two years and owes much of her inspiration and content for her poems to her time there. She is passionate about social and environmental justice. Her work has been published in The Maine Review, Voices, and HowlRound. Read more at wordsareaneed.blogspot.com. Facebook hyperlink: https://www.facebook.com/kelseymayday Twitter: @kelsey_may_day