SCREAM IN HIGH PARK Poetry takes over the park in this 15th edition of the Scream Literary Festival. Among the 12 poets performing are Shane Koyczan, Sean Dixon, Christine Duncan, Roy Miki and Zoe Whittall. Monday (July 9), 7 pm. Pwyc ($10 suggested). CanStage Amphitheatre, High Park. 416-466-8862, www.thescream.ca. Rating: NNNNN
WHAT WILL YOU BE PERFORMING AT THE SCREAM? We're all given a 15-minute set to do our thing. But I try not to plan things too much. It depends on the other writers: if they're loud, then maybe I'll do something a bit quieter; if they're quiet, I'll just scream my lungs out.
HOW DOES THE SCREAM COMPARE TO OTHER POETRY READINGS? We get to read in the park, and something like a thousand people come out, a lot of whom aren't ordinarily into poetry.
LARGEST AUDIENCE? I just did the Canada Day celebration on Parliament Hill with Feist and other great performers, and that was for something like 35,000 people.
SMALLEST? Probably two. But whether it's two or 2,000, it's the same show.
DESCRIBE YOUR POETRY? I call it talk rock. People have always been trying to label it. They call it slam poetry, but you can find any kind of poetry in slam.
LAST REAL JOB? I was a security guard in Vancouver. But I had a shotgun pulled on me, so I didn't want to do that any more. It's not like I'm living the lifestyle of the rich and famous. I never want to eat rice again; that's all I ate for the first three years I was a professional poet.
WHERE DO YOU LIKE TO GO OUT IN TORONTO? I like the parks - not the big ones, just the little random ones where I can sit and write.
DO YOU HAVE A NICKNAME? MC Hot Ribs. I was walking around Chicago with some friends. Every poet has a cool MC name, so I just closed my eyes and looked up, and when I opened them there was this sign: hot ribs.