Spoken word

billboards, poetry, Micah Purnell, Manchester, meditation

Billboards for… poetry

Dear progress is a series of word art/poems written by Micah Purnell and displayed on billboards around the city of Manchester, England.

The video explains both the wording and what Micah is thinking on.  He describes this work as:



Becoming a spoken poet – Sarah Kay

I can divide my spoken word journey into 3 steps

  1. I can, I can do this
  2. I will, I will continue
  3. I realized I didn’t have to write poems that were indignant if that wasn’t what I was.  There were things that were specific to me.

It’s more than writing about what you know – it’s about gathering up all the knowledge and epxerience you have had up to now to help you dive into what you don’t know.

The TED talk starts with her poem “If I should have a daughter” – for a few mins.  But if possible, take the 20 minutes to watch her whole talk.  She is an exciting communicator and teacher – and there is a strong possibility that after viewing this talk, you will want to write poetry yourself.

Does Poetry have anything to say about modern life?

And yes, I get the irony of describing this online. But 2 viewpoints worth hearing as they are utterly opposite and relate to modern society. Worth noting that both poets are male. Both have elements of truth, both are heavily biased towards one view and both have pools of shallow reasoning where cause/effect and consequences are not dipped into overmuch. But they get you thinking. And possibly talking. Whether you discuss that in person with a friend over coffee or tweet about it – or both – are your modern life choice.


One point of view: “Look up”

46,000,000 viewings


The opposite: “Look down (look up parody)”

394,000 viewings


And here is another: “Look Down: a rhyming response to that LOOK UP viral video”

look down parody


195,000 viewings


Another : “Look down (look up parody)”


317, 000 viewings