The Hay Literary Festival 2012 at the Bangla Academy in Dhaka included an event titled ‘Kobir Larai’. It owed its name to long rural Kobigaan performances and, especially, the notion (and component) of debate. The event showcased emerging young student poets from Dhaka University as they formed two teams and competed by composing poems on the spot. The audience, who was to be the judge of the contest, had to choose the winner with the help of the clapometer or the applause-meter that decided the winner based on the magnitude of claps each poet received. A greater challenge was how to understand Kobigaan: as a singular form, distinct from other performance genres like Tarjaa, Kheur, Jaarigaan, Panchali, and others, or in relation to them, as a flexible assemblage of partly shared elements.