Profile Photo of Sy-CloneI was born and raised in Mexico City… I remember the first time I swung poi. Of course I didn’t know it was called poi or that I was going to actually become good at it.
It was my brother’s birthday party, and I knew almost no one there. Fortunately for me my brother had gone to a rave a few day before, where he saw a guy spin some glow-sticks He was so excited about it, that he went home and made some homemade pois, which weren’t but hakki-sacks with shoelaces attached to them. I say that this was a fortune for me, because it was in his birthday party that one of my brother’s friends picked up is “hakki-pois” and started swinging them around. Honestly, he sucked!!! However, there was something really interesting in spinning poi. After realizing my failure in mingling in a party were 95% of the people were gay, I decide to make a fool out of my self and start spinning for the first time in my life. The first thing I notice was that poi swinging is in fact much harder than it looks like!!! After hitting myself several times, I was truly pissed off at me for not been able to do something with such a basic concept. However, it was truly addictive, and I couldn’t stop spinning I was still practicing after the party was over. I borrowed my brother’s pois, and because I was living outside Mexico City in a town called Cuernavaca where there’s nothing to do, I was always practicing.
On the next weekend I went back to Mexico City, where I gave my brother his poi back and made me some for myself. By this time poi was already like a drug to me… and it was a contagious one too!!! In a really short period of time I was not only getting good at it, but I also had some of my friends and family spinning hakki-pois as well. However there wasn’t anyone to teach me how to spin, so I start learning my trick by myself. In a few weeks I had already mastered tricks that later on I would know are called “Chase”(2 and 3 beat) “Crock screw” “Butterfly” and one handed butterfly.
Unfortunately there wasn’t a big Poi culture in Mexico City. Don’t get me wrong, there was one, but everyone was stuck with the same style and the same two moves, the chase and the butterfly. They could play around with them, but they lack transitions. After about 8 months of spinning, I getting bored because I was unable to find new tricks. It was not until a friend told me about the web page “home of poi” that my horizons reopened in front of me… I remember seen the behind the back chase and tell to myself that I was never going to be able to do it. I started practicing harder than ever, I would practice in my room non- stop for hours, a week later I was able to do the behind-the-back chase, and I felt like I was untouchable. 11 months after my first spin I was able to do almost all the trick from home of poi. That’s when I moved to San Antonio.
Overnight I found myself in a country whose language I couldn’t truly speak, surrounded by a culture that I didn’t truly understand. However, I was lucky enough to find a group of people that share my passion for poi. They called themselves “Brothers of the flame” and after e-mailing a member called Wulff, I found out they practice every Monday down the street of where I was staying!! He even invited me to show for practice any time I could.
I have to say that by this time I was really comfortable with my spinning, and honestly I thought I was going to out do them, as it was the case in Mexico… I could be further from the truth. When I shoed up to practice, I saw an ex-member do a se that let me with the mouth wide open. He was doing stuff with fire that that I was still trying to figure out with my hakki-poi. They asked me to spin some, but after seen what they could do I was ashamed of my skills. I did a set any way, and made my mind right there and then that some day I would be at their level, no matter what.
I started showing up to practice every week, learning as much as I could. Every Monday I would try to learn at least one trick to practice during the week, and in a few months I was showing a great progress. I became something like a “step brother” of the flame, and after one year of dedication to the art of poi, I finally became a legitimate brother. When I first started showing up to practice, I thought that “The Brothers of the Flame” was just a group of people with a cool name and great skills. Now, after almost a year and a half of knowing them, I have understood why we call ourselves Brothers of the Flame. It is because we all have become more than friends, the fire of our poi and of our hearths has made us brothers. Fire dancers come and go, but the brothers are always there. That’s why I thank God for allowing me to meet Vertigo, Vortex, Wulff and Satyr who have gave me the opportunity to tell my story and finally I would like to thank my new brothers for shearing no only their knowledge, but their lives as well. I know it took me a long-ass time to write this Bio, but here it is. Thanks for everything and thank you for reading this.