A Little About My Favourite Place to Spend a Tuesday


Not too long ago, actually right around a year back, a good friend, who happens to be the niece of my best friend, suggested that I check out an open stage poetry night at a local lounge.  The place is an icon in Edmonton, it is a pizza place (Rosebowl Pizza) that serves excellent pizza among other things, and they have events like this quite often.  When I got there, I was astounded by the talent I encountered and soon tried to become involved in the poetry scene in Edmonton.  Even though I had published two poetry books, I had never publicly performed a reading and this was really what I needed to take my love of poems that stretches back to the second grade when I wrote the Father’s Day poem below:

Roses are Red

Violets are Blue

Cofffee is Strong

And so are you

(scroll down to read today’s poem, called “Rouge”)

I added a drawing of my Dad along with it, actually, when I was a kid I did a lot of drawing, and liked the idea of one day being a writer of other things, but I digress.  I was pretty nervous the first time I got up, but it felt so good to express myself and to speak in public that I went back time and time again until I was pretty much a regular.  I can’t even tell you what happened, but I think they broke for Summer and I stopped going.  It was a shame, but finally last night I decided I wanted to get active in my poetry again and went to another group, usually populated by older poets called “The Stroll of Poets” and it felt really good, I didn’t even have to get over my nervousness all over.  Going to Rouge Poetry also led me to apply to have my own radio show on Campus radio and I had such a wonderful time.  This too ended, but not before I interviewed Ahmed Knowmadic, one of Edmonton, and even Canada’s top poets, Alice Major, who put out an incredible book about poetry called “Intersecting Sets”, one of Edmonton’s Poet Laureates, and a few others.  I love to read, but I often need a motivator, and having my own show really motivated me to do my research, which I greatly enjoyed.  I experienced all kinds of new things.  Anyhow, the point of all this is that I decided that tonight I would go back to the Rouge Lounge where hopefully my old friend Ahmed will be reading and hosting and read a few poems.  I wrote a poem about the lounge below, which I hope you all enjoy!

The Edmonton City Hall, right in the centre of the Arts District

The Edmonton City Hall, right in the centre of the Arts District





Each night that I go into that lighted glow

I feel my self worth and confidence grow

I stand up and soon I know

That I have become the show



I often meet young beautiful girls

With bright eyes and sexy curls

And for that moment when I stand in the light

My heart glows and my soul is pure delight



Some of the poets rap their rhymes

All of them devote their precious time

To entertain all who attend

And I try to pretend at the end

I don’t have a wish to live always like this



The burgers there are juicy rare

The spices tickle one’s tongue

Just as you think you can eat no more

Your neighbor’s communal pizza comes


I drink it all in and somehow begin

To feel so much younger than when I came

The poems are pure delight and such a sight

On the stage as the young people play their poet’s game



Oh, there is a waitress there

With red-brown silky hair

Who really seems to care

I wait to see her each time

It is not my crime

It’s those sexy things she wears



We are this happy group that gathers in a band

To show off their linguistic command

And perhaps an audience of a hundred

But we all would get up and recite our verse

If not a person ever attended



It is such a thing

To hear one’s own poem ring

Through a microphone to a crowded room

In a way we sing when we do our thing

It makes you feel like you’re on the moon



I often fill my stomach up with that tasty pop

That keeps coming all night long

I also savor each bite of French fry delight

Though I know it’s not wise to eat this way

It’s just that I crave these things all week until Tuesday



The sights and sounds of this poetry loving lounge

From the people to the decorations

Cause me each day to think and scrounge

For new poetic celebrations



The room is filled with lovely people

Spiced with laughs and shouts

It makes me believe one day my voice will be known

Despite my nagging doubts



The artists there all seem to share

Care and love more than anywhere

And on this cold night in my city home

I’m going to head to where I never feel alone



Leif Gregersen

November 18, 2014



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