Spotlight: Yomi Sode

— 17 Sep 2018 by Lauren Furey

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London's premiere, grassroots spoken word night, BoxedIn, returns to Boxpark Shoreditch on Tuesday 25 September. We caught up with, founder, Yomi Sode to find out more.

Tell us who you are and what you do.

My name is Yomi Sode and I am a writer and event producer. Currently my show, COAT,  is touring; you can check the dates here. I also run Boxedin, which comprises of myself, Sean Mahoney, Amina Jama and Cecilia Knapp. It's our monthly poetry open mic night that takes place at Boxpark Shoreditch.

How did the idea for BoxedIn come about?

A conversation took place between myself and a Boxpark staff member. Essentially it was meant to be a pilot event to bring poetry to a new audience. I believed there was room for poetry to be heard and championed alongside the music based events happening at that time. Five plus years, I’m thankful they provided the opportunity. 

What can people expect from BoxedIn at Boxpark Shoreditch next week?

Poems! That’s the most important thing. A good vibe. We trust in making the space as comfortable as we can. Even if an attendee is not a poetry goer, there’ll be something there to keep them entertained. It’s two hours! We pride ourselves in running a night that get’s straight to the point and leaves enough room for folks to talk and network afterwards.

You're into your sixth year of BoxedIn, how have you seen it evolve over the years?

Boxedin has grown over the years and with mentions in Time Out and various online articles, Boxedin has solidified itself alongside great poetry events to attend. Most importantly, It’s been a pleasure seeing the careers of writers over the years and knowing that at some point, Boxedin was part of their journey. We hope to continue this and be at the forefront of the poetry scene as it evolves.  

What inspires your own writing and poetry?

It tends to be what happens in my day to day. This can be within society or my personal life. The well never runs dry so to speak. There is always something, even when it seems like nothing. 

Who should be on everyone's lips right now? Are there any poets whose work has particularly stood out for you lately?

Too many names to mention and should I start listing names, I know I’ll be met with “you forgot about xyz”, not to mention I am not even considering the team in this yet, so I will just do that politician thing and say "come to BoxedIn"; that’s what I’d like to be on your lips, BoxedIn! 

What does the rest of 2018 have in store for you?

Touring, working on my first collection of poems, trying to rest whenever a window opens to do so.

What was the last song you listened to?

Ghetts - Ghetto Gospel: The New Testament. Because just naming a song, is criminal. The whole album is fire! 


Yomi and the team return to Boxpark Shoreditch next week. In the meantime, be sure to follow BoxedIn on Facebook and Instagram, and you can find Yomi Sode on Twitter.