What is SpokenWord Paris?

SpokenWord Paris is one pole of a nomadic tribe of people who love poetry, writing and song. A home for creatives and lost anglophones. We do two open mic nights (SpokenWord every Monday, Open Secret every Wednesday) and a writers’ workshop at Shakespeare & Company (every Sunday.) We do a literary journal called The Bastille and Tightrope Books published many of us in the book “Strangers in Paris.” Click on the blue stamp on the right to sign up to the mailing list.

Open mic/scène ouverte: Performance poetry. Lire vivant. Poésie sonore. Stand up. Monologue. Stories. Beat poetry. Spoken word. English. Français. Your own original texts. Old texts from Rimbaud to Dr Seuss, Beowulf to Gil Scott-Heron. Chacun a son mot à dire. Make the words come alive…………………….. Acoustic songs also welcome.

Every Monday Au Chat Noir, 76 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud 75011. Métro Parmentier/Couronnes. Sign up 8pm to 9.30pm in the bar. Poetics start from 8.30pm underground. Check out the
Practical info page for more info. Paris’ biggest and longest-running English open mic night, started in 2006. All langues welcome. Entry one euro.


SpokenWord themes 
Nov 23rd – NIGHT guest poet steve dalachinsky
Nov 30th – GRATITUDE guest Sebastian Marx
Dec 7th – JOY/ECSTASY guest poet Amy Hollowell
Dec 14th – MIRACLES guets poet Rufo Quintavalle
Dec 21st, Dec 28th – A SpokenWord or shall we have a break?

Open Secret
Every Wednesday David Leo Sirois hosts his open mic for poetry & song at the Bistrot des Artistes, 6 rue des Anglais, 75005, métro Maubert-Mutualité (line 10) or St Michel (line 4.) Sign up 8.30pm. Themes annnounced by the mailing list and on facebook. Free.

The Other Writers’ Group
Every Sunday. 6.30pm-8.30pm at Shakespeare & Company, 37 rue de la Bûcherie, 75005. An excellent feedback workshop for 6 euros. Bring your writing or just come and listen join the discussion. Hosted by David Barnes and Bruce Sherfield. Description Join us afterwards for a drink. Running since 2005.

Chat Noir sketch drawn by Allison Iwata.

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November’s gone. Some pictures to remember it.

Photos taken by Sabine Dundure during these November Mondays:

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Sebastian Marx guest stand up at SpokenWord this Monday

Sebastian is an American expat and stand up comedian living in Paris who performs his complete One Man Show in both French and English every Sunday at La Nouvelle Seine in Paris 75005. Every Friday, he hosts “The New York Comedy Night” a selection of the best English-speaking stand up comedy in Paris.

He also has a weekly segment on the French television show Le Grand 8 on the Channel D8.

He is excited to participate at SpokenWord because he thoroughly enjoys speaking words.

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“After a Night of Terror, Poets Rewrite Their Love Affair With Paris”. An article by Chris Newens on Narratively.

This article on Narratively talks about a group of poets in Paris during this period of terror. You might recognize poets like Alberto Rigettini, David Barnes, Josh Cake, the Poetry Brothel’s Crew and many others, including yourself, downstairs au Chat Noir or in the Caves Saint Sabin. Click here.

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Monday Nov 23rd… steve dalachinsky is our guest poet

The theme is “Night”
And our guest is steve dalachinsky

steve dalachinsky was born in brooklyn after the last big war – has managed to survive lots of little wars – is a recent recipient of a chevelier d’ordre des arts et des lettres – his recent books include flying home a collabortion with visual artis sig bang schmidt (paris lit up press 2015) and fool`s gold (feral press 2014). his latest cds are fallout of dreams (roguart 2014) and ec(h)o-system (bambam records 2015). forthcoming from overpass press in 2016 – the invisible ray.

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Update – Other Writers’ Group today

Update to time & place.

Other Writers’ Group today 6.30pm-8.30pm.
Meet in front of Shakespeare & Co.

We’re still going to have a writer’s workshop for anyone who needs to come together, talk or reach out in a time of hardship.
Shakespeare & Co have closed for the day. So w
e’ll meet in front of the shop at the normal time 6.30pm and go from there. 37 rue de la Bucherie opposite Notre Dame.

Contact (if you can’t find us): David 06 26 90 13 26

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Other Writers’ Group today

Other Writers’ Group today 6pm-8pm.

We’re still going to have a writer’s workshop for anyone who needs to come together, talk or reach out in a time of hardship.
At a slightly earlier time – 6pm to 8pm – because the shop is closing early.
At Shakespeare & Co, 37 rue de la Bucherie opposite Notre Dame.

David & Bruce


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This day I need gentleness and friendship


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Kindly reminder: Open Secret, tonight at Le Bistrot des Artistes, “Risk it!” with La Copine de Ferdinand!

“Risk it!” is tonight’s topic at Open Secret, the open-eyed, open-eared open mic for performers of every ilk (yes, I feel ilky today, sayeth David Leo), at Le Bistrot des Artistes in the Latin Quarter, where “Amor vincit omnia,” precisely at 6 rue des Anglais (a pale, skinny passageway that pokes Boulevard Saint Germain on one side & rue Lagrange on the other).  At 8:30 rolling sign-up sparks up, & at 9 the conflagration (congregation?) of creativity begins, down in the cool stone “cave.”

We are all quite fortunate to have a particular professional mystery woman presenting her featured performance tonight, in the character of La Copine de Ferdinand.  You may have seen a 5-minute teaser of this act at SpokenWord (our Mother Ship), or at Edouardo & Friends – involving odd props such as a fish bowl & a roll of toilet paper.  Whether you have had a glimpse or not, it is worth a goooood long look at our special guest: a full-time actress, performance artist & comedian.  Unforgettable!

La Copine de Ferdinand takes countless artistic risks, like Walt Whitman when he almost wrote “I Hear the Bank of America Singing,” saying so subversively: “I will go down to my bank by the river, & make myself undisguised & naked – I am mad to be in contact with my cash, it is for my fingers forever, so youthful & crisp I could request a red wine vinaigrette to sprinkle upon it!”

Come, make a leap, take a risk!  If you wish.  I will preach what I practice in the park around my corner – my newest, bestest song, “City With No Moon.”  I’ll leave you with a lyric…


When will I see whom I wish

in the glass?

The past gets better always

but I fly forward fast.

You come at this time when

I look for the Sound

that holds every language –

all tones can be found.

I saw you on the cusp of

sleep into dream.

Wanted to speak –

don’t know what I mean.

You were wearing white light like

hypnotic perfume –

& I’d like to see you

in this city with no moon.

See you,


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Kind reminder: Open Secret, this Wed., “Perform the experiment!” with special guest star Ryan Galer.

“Halloo!”  Got that from Winnie the Pooh. . .This is just to say that I believe you’d love to see our featured human at this Wednesday’s Open Secret, the Other open mic of SpokenWord Paris.  I am required by local laws, & Interpol, to capitalize the word ‘Other,’ to warn you about the CrazyFunny (“C’est dingue!”) shenanigans of Ryan Galer, performer extraordinary, who gets weirder & better & more intriguing each week.  Details, links & video below.  Oh, & my general blah-blah-blah! :)

David 2


David Leo Anti-Hero Pseudo-Impresario Oreos-Are-So-Last-Millennium Macho Man Sirois here!

“Yes, we can!” That’s what all my friendly, welcoming pharmacists cheer me with whenever I walk in. I’m a frequent flyer. ;) We is you & me. Yes, we can! The following is a welcoming to Open Secret, a wildly blossoming open mic, under the big, sexy umbrella of SpokenWord Paris, longest-running Anglophone open mic in the Pretty City.

Share your secret heart Wednesdays at Le Bistrot des Artistes in the Latin Quarter, at 6 rue des Anglais, an ecstatic passageway between Boulevard Saint Germain & rue Lagrange, people. . .Metro Maubert-Mutualité (line 10) or Saint-Michel (line 4). 8:30, sign-up is born, 9pm Things begin. Happenings. Look for the nerdy guy in the pirate hat. He’ll hook you up! Anyway.

This week we’ll unveil our most hilarious Open Secret yet! Really. The perfectly scientific topic is: “Perform the experiment!” Our cutting-edge Special Guest, specialer than the mind can grapple with, is Ryan Galer – experimental performance artist (who has clipped his toenails & had his hair cut on stage, I’ll have you know), stand-up comedian (Melting Pot, “Edouardo & Friends” at Culture Rapide, many venues in Berlin…), filmmaker (https://vimeo.com/ryangaler/), & just a generally swell guy. :) He will be presenting the much-anticipated part 2 of his show “Welcome in Putingrad” – see the link here for a tasty part of part 1, where Ryan’s character Russian Man (anyone reminiscing on my hero Andy Kaufman?) invites a pigeon expert onstage (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PTR01KDxhms)

This week Ryan’s mystery visitor claims to be named Jason Stoneking. He’s actually an author with several books to his credit – whether you believe that’s his real name or not! It’s pretty fancy.

Who knows what secret stunts Ryan will pull! His experiments evolve with every performance. . .& you? Are you ready to rawk? Ya feelin’ experimental? Do what you’ve always dreamed of…“Perform the experiment!”

Wednesday evenings. Le Bistrot des Artistes. Latin Quarter – “Vox populi, vox dei.” “The voice of the people is the voice of God.” The people have spoken: 60-some-odd peeps came out last week to see Stephanie Papa, who reigned as queen of inventive verse, & also to perform their hearts out with their own (or others’) poetry, prose, frozen noses, comedy, performance art, sacred rituals involving philosophy & the burning of hair (seriously), voice, guitar, oh, & a lot more voice & guitar. See you at the Bistrot!

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Rachel Rose Reid – guest storyteller 2nd Nov 2015

Rachel Rose Reid was raised on a hybrid of immigrant oral tradition, English folk culture and concrete jungle. As a storyteller and spoken word artist she regularly bridges between all three worlds.
She has performed her work at the Barbican (UK), Nuyorican Poets Café (USA), and throughout the UK spoken word and storytelling scenes.

She has beenRachel Rose Reid Artist in Residence for Dickens 2012 Bicentenary, the Saison Poetry Library, and has written and performed commissioned work for Billy Bragg, BBC Radio 3, Old Vic New Voices and the Royal Shakespeare Company.
RRR loves collaborations and has created work with a diverse range of artistic partners including the Roundhouse Experimental Choir, UK hip hop group Dizraeli & the Small Gods.

“Immense skill and breathless conviction. There’s no faulting Reid’s command of her craft” – The Times
“Polished and compelling. A consummate performer…Definitely one to watch” – The Independent
“Rachel Rose Reid conjures a glimpse of magic” – The Guardian

Social Media links:

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