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The proposition of organizing and maintaining the strength of an open mic poetry night is a tenuous one. There are dates to arrange, issues of poetic style and subject to consider, credibility to establish and word of mouth to generate.

This proposition has been well negotiated over the past two years by poet Diana Browning, host of Poetry on the Edge, who's seen her hip brainchild blossom into the longest running poetry night in Tampa.

Browning celebrates the success of the poetry series with POE's second Anniversary Bash, held at 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 17, at Borders-Tampa.

POE regularly attracts 25 to 40 poets and enthusiasts to the monthly event, held at Borders-Tampa the third Friday of every month from 9 to 11 p.m., with sign-up at 8 p.m.

Browning (alter ego Bathory von Browning) has been a familiar face to area poets for some time, as a core member of award-winning local poetry/performance group Poetry in the Dark, before going on to establish POE.

The featured artist for the celebration is Stone Handy, an unpretentious Beat poet who performs a mix of written pieces, free verse and works involving audience-participation. He's accompanied by his band, together known as Stone and Company, who play in true coffeehouse Beat style on such instruments as bongos, upright bass and acoustic guitar.

As always at POE events, adult themes are encouraged, so leave the kiddies at home.

Borders is at 909 N. Dale Mabry, Tampa (813-874-5722).

—Cooper Cruz

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