NPR : Tell Me More

Creating An Ecosystem In 140 Characters

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For Tell Me More's second week of Muses and Metpahor poet Holly Bass stopped by to talk about her teen writing initiative at a Washington, D.C. detention center. Bass has been working with her students to create poems that are 140-characters or less. She shared how she inspires them to navigate the sometimes difficult limitation.

"I tell them to just write a whole poem and then you can take one line or two lines from that poem and turn that into your Twitter poem" Bass told Tell Me More's Michel Martin.

She also shared a collaborative poem written by her students:

I am a plant with no seeds/Fielding for soil/I am a good witch with no spells.

"One of the things we talked about is how to turn an emotion into a metaphor...Feeling powerless, so that becomes a 'good witch with no spells.' And so how do you visualize powerlessness in a creative and unique way?" asks Bass.

Week 2 Highlights

to tweet to sing to send out sound to napomo to write each day to read to meet retweet to wit to spring to hash to tag to play

--Holly Bass @hollybass360

Whirlwinds glitter, flat rivers snake her cleft of low cliffs. Cold, lonely, lovely, then grass sweet. Who would not want to eat?

--Heid Erdrich @HeidErdrich

marbled waterscape mosaic of fields— The Great River has witnessed birds, seeds, humans— stories before migration was a word.


About Muses and Metaphor

Tell Me More's annual ode to National Poetry Month in which we feature Twitter poems submitted by NPR fans and hear from poets and writers from all over the country.

But to shake things up, regular contributors to Tell Me More's Beauty Shop, Barbershop and Political Chats are also trying their hands at verses and rhymes while following the submissions on Twitter.

To participate tweet your 140 character or less poems using #TMMPoetry.

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