Each of Melizarani poems tells a real story in a metaphorical and comical poetic way.

Melizarani is a spoken word poet, storyteller and journalist. Her rhymes are drawn from her wild curiosity in taboos and all the things her Mother told her not to do.

About the speaker

MELIZARANI T.SELVA (@melizarani) is a spoken word poet, storyteller and journalist from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Her rhymes are drawn from her wild curiosity in taboos and all the things her Mother told her not to do. Having been the first Malaysian to speak and perform poetry at Asia’s largest TEDx event, TEDxGateway (Mumbai), she has also gained first runner up at both The National Singapore Slam and Ubud Writers and Readers Festival slam.

Her poems have also seen the prominent stages of Lit Up Singapore, Georgetown Literary Festival, Urbanscapes, Raising The Bar, Melaka International Arts Festival 2014, Cri de Femme International Poetry and Arts Festival 2015 and various literary events in Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Australia and India. Her first book of poems titled ‘Taboo’ made the Top 10 Best-Seller List of Malaysia’s Largest Online Bookstore.

Comforted by reviews of her poems being “unafraid to be Indian” and “unapologetically Malaysian”, her spoken word elements are also garnered from her deep academic interest, following her Master’s degree focused on the Malaysian Indian Identity representations. Published in The Asian Centre Anthology of Malaysian Poetry in English, her poems have also been translated into Bahasa Malaysia and published by Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (National Institute of Language and Literature). She also currently organises Kuala Lumpur’s only bimonthly spoken word poetry open mic ’If Walls Could Talk’ and a poetry workshop series, ‘Poets in Progress’ on using spoken word for effective storytelling and public speaking, to voices of all ages.

Favorite quotes from this talk See all

I love being told what I cannot say because I will find a hundred different ways to say it anyway because you told me what I cannot say but you never told me how I should not say it. And that is the power of an artist. — Melizarani T.Selva

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