Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival Is Happening!


Movies have been made and submitted, judging has been completed, a delicious venue has been secured (Nick’s Bar – with the fancy fancy red curtains!) and the night of October 12th picked out – and now it’s that time. TICKETS ARE NOW ON SALE for the very first Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival Viewing Party and Awards Ceremony. I’m pleased as punch to report that emceeing that night will be handled by my favorite duo, Tony Brown and Melissa Mitchell!
You can order your tickets from the Doublebunny Press store, right here.


Are You Making Your Movie?


OK! So it’s been a little while, and I wanted to check back in – everyone’s making their movies, right? You know about the Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival, yes?

Well, there have been some osm new developments for RHPFF, and I totally want to tell you all about them – check this stuff out:

♦First of all, submissions are now FREE! There is no longer an entry fee associated with submissions to the festival – yessiree, Bob, you can now submit your poem film to the festival for the mere price of postage. So much win \o/ Thank you to everyone who contributed to the Go Fund Me campaign* – we raised almost $600 last month, and covered pretty much all of the prize money. This baby is free now – please take advantage of that delicious little fact.

♦Secondly, do you know about the Venue Challenge? The venue that submits the most poem films (or you can call them videos, of course), with a minimum of five submissions, gets one of the awards named in its honor. So at the awards ceremony and viewing party this autumn, we might be announcing The Boston Cantab Award for Best Animation. Or the Slam Free Or Die I Shot It On My Lawn Phone Award. Or the Louder Arts Award for Best Music or Sound. How about the Busboys and Poets Best Valentine? The winning venue gets to pick the prize they want to call their own. Think about it – how cool would it be if your venue could claim that kind of bragging right? (And also a full page ad in the program!) And, because you were wondering, yes, you can totally rep the Poets’ Asylum – do it!

♦And perhaps the coolest news on the radar is the addition of the Shoots! Youth Prize. Through the contributions of an anonymous donor, RHPFF was able to set up this prize for poets and filmmakers 17 and under. It will be its own $100 prize category, and all submissions to Shoots! will also be qualified for the other prizes..

Which means that now, in addition to the $200 prize for Best Overall Picture, RHPFF will be awarding  $100 prizes in categories for Best Animation, Best Music in a Video, Best Smartphone Production, Under 1 Minute, and Valentine and the Shoots! Prize!

Are you stoked now? I’m so stoked! Time to make some movies! (Rules recap beneath the fold.)

Read the rest of this entry

Next Up!


Ok, so we talked about New Incarnations! About Bold Next Moves! About Cool Projects! Right?


It is with great pleasure that I announce to you that a handful of Asylum staff are pulling together with Doublebunny Press to present the Rabbit Heart 2014 Poetry Film Festival – and that submissions are now open \o/

The Scoop:

This film festival is about bringing together poetry and the visual arts at the intersection of film. Anyone can make a video of a poet reading a poem, but that’s not what Rabbit Heart is looking for. What we’re looking for is what you can do visually with a poem, without showing performance. Use the poem as your soundtrack, add sound effects and music if you’d like, and let that be your springboard for what happens visually – show, don’t tell, and do it up hella good.

More information and links to the submission page right here.

October 6th – Auf Wiedersehen


To our extended poetry family,

On Sunday, October 6, 2013,The Worcester Poets’ Asylum will be closing up shop. After nearly two and a half decades of weekly open mics, we are going on an extended hiatus. We will be back someday in some form. We promise. For now, however, it is time for us to bid the New England poetry scene a very fond “see you later.” But if you know The Asylum, you know that we aren’t going out without a very big bang. As a tribute to the last twenty-four years of weekly poetry open mics and slams in the city of Worcester (that’s roughly 1,250 readings for those of you playing along at home), we are holding one last big show. For one last night, we are pulling out all the stops. One last hurrah! Once more with feeling! Once more into the breech! Many of The Asylum’s past regulars, staff members, team members and features will be there to read and tell stories. All of the Poet’s Asylum merchandise that has been made over the years will be sold. All of the insane recipes that our refreshments team has been too scared to try will be baked and served. A portion of the profits from the event will go towards settling all of The Asylum’s accounts. Whatever is left over will go to benefit our home base for the last two years: Worcester’s only community radio station, WCUW. This is it, kids. If you are looking for a way to show your support of a slam that has given so much to the New England scene, this is your chance. We hope you can all come through and show your love for this legendary New England reading. Doors at 6:30, show at 7 – all ages and free free free; coffee and snacks by donation.

September 29th – Adam Stone


Adam Stone has been involved in slam since he misread an academic schedule in 1998 and wandered into a poetry club by mistake. Since then, Adam has represented venues at the National Poetry Slam twelve times, and for a variety of cities He bartends at the Cantab, where he was trained by the illustrious Judy Griffin;  he has tried to remain true to her visions of overpouring, overlistening, shushing loud people, and occasionally saying something inappropriate regarding the people on stage. Adam currently curates the venue’s weekly writing prompt series, Tips from the Bar, runs a most-weekly writers group called The Crooked Treehouse, and in 2012, he edited the 20 Years at the Cantab Lounge Anthology which celebrated… Well… The twentieth anniversary of the Boston Poetry Slam at the Cantab Lounge. He’s also been published in the 2013 Flicker & Spark Anthology of Queer Writers. In his increasingly spare time, he also works for a comic book store, Million Year Picnic, and has a graphic novel selection that worries many potential suitors. Doors at 6:30, show at 7 – all ages and free free free; coffee and snacks by donation.

Closing Up


Friends & Fans of the Worcester Poets’ Asylum,

It is with a heavy heart that we announce that, after October 6th, the Poets’ Asylum will no longer be hosting a weekly reading. We are going on an extended hiatus & will return sometime next year, but in a new & smaller form.

For almost 25 years we have striven to provide a space for both new & established poets to share their work. We have presented over 1,200 open mics, over 600 feature poets (& paid out over $35,000 to them), hosted iWPS & NorthBeast, & fielded 15 slam teams. When we started there were no weekly poetry readings in Worcester County. Now there is a reading almost every night. We hope that you will continue to support the growth of poetry in the area.

The Worcester Poetry Slam will be transferring to the hands of our friends at The Dirty Gerund. Over the next few months they will be announcing the new format & telling you about some very exciting things they have planned. There are some wonderful things ahead for the Worcester Poetry Slam, so keep your eyes open.

As for now, the Poets’ Asylum will host two more readings:

September 29th we will be featuring Adam Stone & having an open mic.

October 6th will be our final night. We will be having an extended open mic & final send-off.

On the night of the 6th, we’ll also be selling off all of the Asylum merchandise (tee shirts, CDs, stickers, books) to help pay off our bills. This is our last waltz, so we hope you’ll come dance with us one last time.

Thank you to everyone who has supported us through the years, read on our stage, listened in the audience, shared our words, offered us a home, & been a family to us. You are the reason we have done this for so long.

Thank You to the Worcester Artist’ Group, Lucky’s Café, Eleni’s Midnight Café, Java Hut, The Q, The Nu Café, & WCUW-FM for providing us a space to be who we are.

Thank You Worcester for being our Home. We hope we did you proud.

With Love & Gratitude,

-The Poets’ Asylum Staff.

September 22nd – Steve Subrizi


Steve Subrizi lives in Massachusetts and has performed poetry and music across America by himself; with Emerson College’s first slam team, the Gringo Choir; with former New Hampshire slammaster Sam Teitel; and with his band, the Crazy Exes from Hell. He just put out his solo project, called  Home Alone Forever. His poems have been published in such places as MuzzleNeon, and PANK. Doors at 6:30, show at 7 – all ages and free free free; coffee and snacks by donation.