In 1996, April was declared National Poetry Month, a big deal to poets like myself. Each April, we start the challenge to write a poem every day. We read or attend a show; the goal is to engage in our art somehow. Attending the open mics and showcases this year is impossible with physical distancing measures in place.
Last week poetry lovers were sent a life preserver in the name of Traumedy: A Poetry and Comedy Special starring Richmond poet Douglas Powell/Roscoe Burnems, an independent poetry comedy special published to Amazon Prime. Powell is a National Poetry Slam Champion, TEDx speaker, and Three-Time published author who has had has a fascination with standup comedy and wanted to do a show that blended the two artforms.
Filmmaker Nikkea Sharee’ has two previously published documentaries on Amazon Prime: Sis, You Okay? and Man Listen. The documentaries are separate conversations with African American men and women about mental health and trauma both taboo topics in our community. Powell is apart of Man Listen and a predominate theme of his writing is mental health and suicide ideation. Thus making Traumedy an organic evolution for the pair.
Filmed in October 2019 at the Dark Room in Richmond, VA, Douglas brilliantly balances the heaviness of his poetry with comedy. His transitions are seamless as he shares then invites you to laugh at his pain.
If you have Amazon Prime, get your 60-minute poetry fix with Traumedy: A Poetry and Comedy Special. If you would like to learn more about Traumedy, Douglas Powell/Roscoe Burmens is scheduled to be interviewed this Sunday with Keep the Mic On | Poets and Platforms Edition on Zoom at 7 pm. Email Keepthemicon@gmail.com to receive the link to the meeting.
5 dropped mics out of 5