Tag Archives: Open mic

Wadadli Pen Open Mic – A New Beginning

When: Saturday, January 14, 2012

Time: 7:30pm until 9:00pm.

Where: Best of Books, #1 Village Walk, Friar’s Hill Rd

Description: No we’re not starting over, but with a New Year comes another opportunity, a clean page to write our lives the way we want it. An opportunity to not just build from scratch but to move forward building of off our experiences from the past year(s).

With that in mind Wadadli Pen Open Mic presents: A New Beginning. Let us greet the new year the best way we know how, with the word.

So looking forward to seeing and sharing with all of our old and new friends and come tell us your stories, share your poetry, sing us your songs, entertain us with your plays and test your verbal skills if you’re up for the impromtu challenges.

Saturday 14th January promises a fun evening for the whole family as we do everytime.

A New Beginning – See it how you want it, Take it how you feel it, say it how you mean it.

Remember: Saturday 14th January, 7:30pm sharp, Best of Books #1 Village Walk, Friar’s Hill Rd.

Happy New Year!

Promoting Literacy in Antigua and Barbuda

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Open Mic piece by Brenda Lee Browne

I did not know that I was black until I was 11……..until then I ate fish and chips, watched cartoons and rice and peas on a Sunday…….my friends were my friends as we shared the same love for sci fi ‘lost in space’, ‘thunderbirds’ and ‘captain scarlet’ to name a few. I read janet and john books and about Heidi and her grumpy grandfather, as well as Tom Brown’s very sad school days……..I was not black until I was 11, when the colour of my skin made me academically, socially different, judged by my skin colour and not my east London speech……..where my parents’ birthplace became my own…..I did not know that I was black until I was 11 and I learnt that being black made you lesser than and have to work twice as hard to make it……that your skin colour is the first thing people see and base all their expectations on………..I became black at 11 cultivating my own language,music and dreams based on the collective memories of my parents and their fiends…….by Brenda Lee Browne


THANKS for sharing Brenda Lee; readers, remember to respect her copyright and wordsmiths be sure to check out the Wadadli Pen Open Mic, second Saturday of every month at the Best of Books, #1 Village Walk Mall.

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Open Mic action

‘School Dayz’ – That is the next theme for the Wadadli Pen Open Mic on Sat. 17th of September….tell a friend…Best of Books, #1 Village Walk – 7:30pm…it’s kid friendly. Usually the second Saturday of every month.

Also, don’t forget Expressions (by August Rush) …poetry nights… fiction and other forms of oratory welcomed as well…second and fourth Tuesday of each month…at Heavenly Java 2 Go…in Redcliffe Quay…it’s a different grown up vibe.

Both of these are good limes and have been consistently active over the past year (in fact, this is the third season of Expressions while Wadadli Pen’s Open Mic is one year old) even if you don’t read, you can listen…check ’em out.

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Wadadli Pen Open Mic and Antigua Public Library Team Up

The following notice was issued by the organizers of the Wadadli Pen Open Mic:

Wadadli pen open mic continues under the theme ‘It’s My Thing’.

In addition we’ll be linking up with the Public Library – which, as a promotion for its American Corner, will be staging its first Open Mic – for a (Wadadli-Pen first) double-header Open-mic/ Spoken word.

As usual invitation is extended to EVERYBODY so walk wit your BB, book, friend, paper, pencil, pen…come out and enjoy an evening of the word. Open Mic starts at 7:00pm and don’t forget the topic ‘Its My Thing’; take it how you want it, say it how you feel it.

Venue (as usual): The Best of Books at Royal Palm on Friars Hill Road.

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Gimme A Break

‘Gimme a Break’ (Give Me a Break) is the topic for this month’s Wadadli Pen Open-Mic. Open-Mic will be on Saturday 11th June from 7:15 p.m. at Best of Books, Royal Palm branch on Friar’s Hill Rd. So inviting all to come out and catch a breather (you know you need it) bring a friend and/or family and enjoy poetry, storytelling and more…

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In 2010, Best of Books requested the use of  the Wadadli Pen name for an Open Mic it hoped to initiate. I thought it was a great idea and, as I didn’t have the time and resources to pursue it myself , was happy to see them take it on. The open mic takes place the second Saturday of each month, each month with a different prompt. Store employee Glen Toussaint organizes and leads the open mic, and I stop by as often as I can, mostly taking it in.  I would like to see more interaction between the original Wadadli Pen and the Open Mic…hopefully publishing some of the Open Mic pieces here will deepen that interaction.

So if you’re a Wadadli Pen Open Mic regular don’t hesitate to submit to wadadlipen@yahoo.com

This piece is from the person who initiated the Open Mic, Best of Books manager and co-owner Barbara Arrindell. It was in response to the May 2011 prompt ‘A life, a spirit, a name’ (read but don’t touch; remember to respect the author’s copyright):

A LIFE, A Spirit … A Name

By Barbara A Arrindell – 13th May 2011 – Wadadli Pen Open Mic

Why are they crying, Father? I would have expected them to be happy … but they are …sad and angry and confused and … and disappointed even … Why do they look like that?

(Sighing) Well to be truthful, my child, those sombre looks are as a result of you.

Me? What do you mean me? What did I do? What could I have done, Father? I haven’t even been born yet!

True, and, based on the way that the discussion is going down there, you may never be born. 

What do you mean? You told me that I’d be born in 7 1/2 months and that I’m going to be a boy, even though right now I don’t see any evidence of that … and you told me that I’d have fun swimming at the beach and that …. even though I would never come first in my class at school I’d still be a smart person and you told me that I would be the one to lead the West Indies team to victory in the World Cup in 2034 … What do you mean I may not be born … ?

Hush, child … don’t fret … this happens more often than you might expect.

What happens, Father? I don’t understand!

Sit child!                    You see the person who is supposed to be your mother is young and she has other plans for her life … she wants to complete her college education before she has a baby … and her mother will be embarrassed because she’s not yet married …

Embarrassed because of me, Father … but why?

Well those humans on earth have made up all sorts of rules and called them my laws and they often use them to make people feel bad if they don’t live their lives in a certain way. They say that I will be upset if they break the laws …

You mean that you’ll be upset if I am born, because my mommy and that guy down there who she’s been sending text messages to aren’t married …?

Child, I said that they say that I’ll be mad!

Will you, Father?

That’s a hard question to answer … You see in the early days I used to give the humans rules to live by because I though that it would make their lives less confusing … all I ever really wanted was for them to be happy … but eventually I realized that the way that they had developed has made it difficult for them to all understand my true meanings. The “laws” were only meant to give them guidance and instead they had just confused themselves with their interpretations. They have killed each other in my name … enslaved each other in my name … discriminated against each other in my name so I got a bit fed up one day and told them, STOP! … forget it … I said to them just listen … Two rules! If you can do these two things or at least if you can work towards doing these two things always … I’ll be cool … I’ll be proud of you.

So are you saying that there are only two laws …

O you’re not even born yet and already you’re misunderstanding and trying to interpret what I’m saying …  I told them that if they worked towards these things then they would be working towards become more like me … I said to them … (1) don’t forget that I exist … so, in other words, don’t get so full of yourself that you think that you know everything and that you can do everything …  Remember always that there’s something greater than you … and the second law is simple …Love! … Love the people around you with the same sort of love that I have for you.

That doesn’t sound so hard, Father … in fact if they did that then they wouldn’t kill and they wouldn’t steal and they wouldn’t do most of the things that cause them problems… and, even if they made a mistake, the idea that they can love would make them say sorry and move on …

Sounds simple doesn’t it, my child?

Look, Father, my mommy is crying again … her mommy just shouted at her.

Yes, close your ears child; those are not the sort of things that you need to hear.

But why is the mommy’s mommy shouting at her? She’s making her sad and … I don’t quite know why …but she’s making me sad too and I’m not even born yet!

Child, don’t worry … when I called you from playing around the pond you were just a spirit, and I told you that it was time to begin life … and that’s where you are right now … and that is all that I can do for you… I gave you a spirit, and a life, but for you to move from here to there someone down there has to be willing to give you a name …

A name … why can’t you give me a name father, or why can’t I give myself a name? TheWest Indiesteam needs me … you said so yourself …

It doesn’t work that way. The name is the key, the name lets you into that world… when a mother starts thinking about a name for her baby, that is when I exhale and know that I have to step aside … when she gives her baby a name she’s claimed its life and its spirit …

So what happens if I don’t get a name …?

You’ll go back around the pond, and when I find another suitable match for you I’ll call you again and give you life … and then we’ll see what happens.

But I’m ready to be born now, Father! I’ve been waiting for ages. It feels as though I’ve been waiting for an eternity …

(laughing) Child, don’t worry, if it doesn’t work out this time there will be other opportunities …..

Wait, Father, the texter man is at her door … he looks a bit scared … but in a way he looks kinda brave … who is he, Father?

He is your father.

But I thought that you were my father, Father …

Yes. I am … but he will be your father on earth.

So what will happen to you… will I have two fathers?

Child you’re asking too many questions … let’s get over one hurdle at a time. If you get a name, in a few years your Sunday school teacher will try to explain where I fit into your life.

Sunday school teacher?! What’s that …

They are talking again, child, do you wish to listen?

O yes, sorry Sir.      He said that he would marry her if that’s what she wants, but she’s shaking her head … O come on Mom … marry him so that I can get a name …… why is she doing this?  … O hang on he says that he’ll love me even if she doesn’t marry him … will that be ok with you, Father … he said love, Father … that’s a good thing isn’t it?

As long as he understands the true meaning … then, yes, it is a good thing.

What’s a Jeremiah or a Jamilla Father?

What do you mean?

 … she just smiled and said that  Jeremiah or Jamilla is making her feel ill?

So what’s a Jeremiah, Father ….  Father, Father? Where are you going Father? Father!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   

 A life … a spirit … and a name …….


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Honouring Motherhood+ at May Wadadli Pen Open Mic

Notice from the Best of Books – hosts of the monthly Wadadli Pen Open Mic @ their Royal Palm Branch, Friars Hill Road, Antigua:

As we prepare for the May instalment of Wadadli Pen Open-Mic we invite all writers to honour motherhood and good health, and May Poles and May weddings  with our unusual topic

“A life, a spirit … a name” .

Write your short story, poem, monologue, short skit or song and be prepared to share and to enjoy what others will share. Everyone is invited to an evening of words, as we celebrate “life, spirit and a name”.

Saturday 14th May

Royal Palm Place


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Fooling Around

‘Fooling Around’ is the topic of the next Wadadli-Pen Open-Mic slated for the 9th of April 2011. Wadadli-Pen Open-Mic is held on the second Saturday of every month at Best of Books/Royal Palms Place on Friars Hill Rd from 7:30pm. Come enjoy and share stories, poetry and more.


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Random photo

This is just a picture of me reading something, somewhere. I think it’s Funky Buddha and it’s one of the Open Mics. I’ve read at various ones over the years and my heart still hammers against my chest wall each time. I decided to share that little tid bit as I make a final push to encourage submissions to Wadadli Pen. Writing is a bit of a high wire act both in the nakedness of creativity and in the drawing of the spotlight to yourself. Why do we do it? Can we not? At this point, I wouldn’t know how to separate me from me the writer; it is a key part of my identity. Moments like this – the audience, the mic, the heart palpitations –  I could do with out but I’ve come to accept them as part of the process of sharing your work. As for the fear? Well, I feel the fear and then do it anyway. Words to live by.

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Expressions Open Mic

August Rush Productions is inviting all poets, spoken word artistes, singers, musicians and dancers to take the stage on Tuesday 22nd February at the Heavenly Java in celebration of Black History Month. Themed ‘Black Magic’, this special installment of Expressions; ‘Poetry In The Pub’ is open to all performers from age 18 and above.

Artists interested in taking the stage are asked to register by Friday 18th February, by calling 780-7754 or 779-6634, or emailing augustrush.antigua@gmail.com for more information. ALL participants will be asked to perform their pieces from memory.

The evening’s event will begin promptly at 8 pm, and there is no entrance fee. Everyone is encouraged to come and be entertained and enlightened by the power of the performing arts as we pay tribute to the struggle and triumph of our black heritage.

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