Next August, Houston hosts a weeklong citywide poetry tour. But before then, the final seven performer slots will be decided during the Word Around Town Poet Draft. According to Lupe Mendez, WAT co-coordinator, the tour is the brainchild of local poet Zelene Pineda, who sought to showcase all the poets she knew and loved. WAT has been around for eight years, but this is only the second year for the Draft. Nine performers have already been chosen from last year's WAT tour; during the Draft, judges will select seven more. ''It helps refresh the lineup in a way that keeps it very relevant to the literary scene in Houston,'' Mendez wrote to us in an e-mail. ''We want to keep the lineup as diverse and as fresh as possible, yet respect and honor the amazing poets that have been on before, so we make a great effort in selecting poets that are masterful and artistic.'' He says the judges are looking at a poet's reach rather than genre. ''To be sure, we want poets that are dedicated to their craft,'' Mendez says. ''We want poets that speak volumes with their voices and their message.''