In the second most literate city in America (according to CBS), it isn't difficult to find book signings, author readings, used book sales, and slam poetry. One of the area's most cherished monthly events is Seattle Spit, a queer spoken word open mic.
The free monthly evening of poetry, short stories, and performance pieces is entering it's ninth year. The night usually starts with a featured artist, followed by an open space for anyone to get up on stage. The latest Spit showdown, February 9, featured Broch Bender, an incredible trans-poet, producer (Robin Hood Is So Gay), published author (Hello My Name Is Broch Bender and Truth 1), and all-around badass. Bender read several pieces, including a gut-wrenching narrative about his late grandfather and a sexy true-life tale of a white water rafting experience with a (questionably gay) tour guide named Steve.
"Seattle Spit is designed to foster and encourage grassroots Queer community through spoken word, creativity and conversation," Bender told Seattle Gay News. "Events like this one are important for community-building in a supportive, friendly, Queer environment."
In the past, featured artists have included Ann Tweedy and Betsy Iverson (I'm Home: What It's Like To Love A Woman) and Cedar Adison Smith, who, when performing at Spit in January 2012, read a poem about refusing other people's ideas of gender. "I am not both," he said to Seattle Gay News. "I am not one or the other - I am just other."
Do yourself a favor and check out Seattle Spit on Facebook or in person, the second Thursday of every month at Wildrose, easily one of the best queer bars in town.
Photo credit: www.theseattlelesbian.com