MISSOULA – The “Wild Mercy” poetry readings have become a tradition at the UM FLAT in recent years, giving voice to an underground community dedicated to the proliferation of stand-up verse. Audiences at this year’s series have responded with lavish praise. Said one attendee at last Thursday’s reading, “They’re not bad.”
What has been leaving audiences in tears, however, is not just the writing. “The ‘stand-up’ part of stand-up poetry really got a makeover this year; the new coach is doing wonders,” commented FLAT manager Griffith. The poets’ new agent, lovingly called Phil by his disciples, has reportedly schooled this year’s lineup in the art of good posture. “It takes your breath away to see it,” commented a wide-eyed Griffith. “There’s some poetry and prose, too.”
The novel artistic paradigm seemed to reach a new peak on Thursday with The FLAT’s own Nick Triolo. One poetry critic described the reading as “superb… there wasn’t a vertebrae out of line, not a single one; it was the smoothest, most entrancing reading I’ve observed on a Thursday.” The praise was not lost on Triolo. “It’s so encouraging to hear when someone appreciates our work.”
The “Wild Mercy” readings are expected to continue to perform to a full house, and will include a much-awaited reading by the FLAT’s own Boss Griffith as well as a guest appearance by New Mexico’s famed E. Withnall. Doors open at 6:30 every Thursday, though seats go quickly.