RHETORIC Objective and Guidelines

RHETORIC Objective

The objective of P4CM's RHETORIC (formerly Lyricist Lounge) is to glorify God in and with our craft of spoken word; edify and challenge believers to grow in bearing the image of Jesus in our thinking, our attitudes, our emotions, our speech, and our action; and minister to the lost the hopelessness and consequences of sin and their utter need for Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. It is these objectives--the supremacy of God's glory, bearing Christ's image, the Gospel, and the excellence in our craft--that have made our event the largest Christian spoken word event in the world.

RHETORIC Guidelines

  1. All poems are to be in agreement with P4CM's Faith Statement and not emphasizing controversial doctrines (e.g. predestination) or non-essentials (e.g. spiritual gifts).
  2. All poems are to be free of offensive and obscene language. If approved, you can use normally offensive language that may be purposed in the context of the poem (e.g. Jackie Hill's poem on being a stud; the use of "nigga" in debunking it's cultural coolness and showing it's racially degrading nature; "rape" and its effects; etc). The use of this approved language is never to be promoted, but understood in light of the poem's context. If an approved offensive term can be changed without affecting the purpose of the poem, then changing it to something non-offensive will be encouraged. 
  3. Every poet (open mic and featured) will take a year off in-between RHETORIC performances (e.g. on 2011, off 2012, on 2013, off 2014, etc). If we ever have RHETORIC more than once a year, it would be at least one RHETORIC off (unless otherwise noted). 
  4. Poem lengths are as follows: Open mic artists must have poems lasting 5 minutes or less.  Featured poets poems are to be between 5 and 10 minutes.
  5. Every poet who performs will need a pastoral reference. This only applies to those poets selected to perform. A pastoral reference is not needed for an audition submission, but be prepared to provide one in case you are selected. This way we have a referral from your pastor (or two or more of their local church leaders instead) saying that your life matches what you are ministering, that you're active and involved in the life of your church, and under someone's leadership/authority and accountable.


As long as each poet agrees to and are within these guidelines, you have the artistic freedom for selecting and writing a poem to be performed. 

Please send us the poem you'd like to perform.  We require video not audio because it helps us see your potential stage presence so send us your best performance with the best recording with good audio.  Do not send a super professionally edited video.  Please just send a live performance.  The deadline for submission is listed at http://rhetoric.p4cm.com and we're constantly ranking and evaluating them so please submit your poems as soon as you can for consideration.  If you don't see current info there, just sign up for our newsletter and you'll get the latest updates.  We'll get back with you if we decide to go with you.