Found Tweet-Poetry

I don’t normally do found poetry, or at least I didn’t before I started playing with my book spines. Yesterday, a poem simply popped out of my tweet stream at me. I’m often amazed by how tweets from several different people in different parts of the world with completely different interests will suddenly all be on the same subject, or feature the same word at the same time. I follow writers, chefs, gardeners, travellers…and yet sometimes, I get a run of tweets about cats, or clouds, or seven tweets in a row (by seven different people) will all contain the word “fiery”. These are random; they aren’t in response to something in the news.

Sometimes it isn’t so specific; just an interesting juxtaposition. The tweets in which I found a poem yesterday were of that nature. I couldn’t resist:

Lipstick and Wax

scarlet toe-nails;
her legs are rambunctious.
“You taste like lipstick & wax.”

At first, I thought the change from 3rd to 2nd person didn’t work, but then I realized that with the quotation marks, it does work, and beautifully.

Thanks to the three tweeters involved, for the inspiration and for permission to use their tweets in a poem.

Here are the original tweets:

Fiona Robyn@fiona_robyn scarlet toe–nails #themostbeautifulthing  12 6:51 AM – 17 Apr

Ian Sales‏@ian_sales
“her legs are rambunctious”. Um, okay. 6:54 AM – 17 Apr 12!/ian_sales/status/192204327232864256

(Ian was quoting from the 2nd line of a novelette on the Hugo shortlist :

Adam Bray‏@fisheggtree Where have U been, U saucy little vixen!? You taste like lipstick & wax but you sure beat fried spiders. #Cambodia  7:01 AM – 17 Apr 12!/fisheggtree/status/192206037510651905/



About Chris Galvin

Chris Galvin is a Canadian writer, editor and photographer dividing her time between Canada and Viet Nam. Her essay Flood Season was a finalist for the 2012 Best of the Net prize, and Discovering Hến Rice in Central Việt Nam won third place (shared) and a Readers’ Choice Award in the 2015 I Must Be Off! Travel Essay Contest. Her work has appeared in various anthologies and literary journals, including Descant, Asian Cha, PRISM International, Room, and others. She has written in Vietnamese and English for Vietnam Tourism Review/Kham Pha Du Lich Vietnam Magazine, Travellive, and Du Lich Giai Tri. Chris is currently looking for a home for her recently completed manuscript, Breakfast Under the Bodhi Tree, a book about living, eating, and tour-guiding in Viet Nam.
This entry was posted in National Poetry Month, Poetry and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Found Tweet-Poetry

  1. Jennifer says:

    love this idea of poetry found in tweets! what a delightful combination you’ve put together

  2. Andy says:

    I haven’t quite progressed to Twitter realms yet. I’m still trying to find my way around Facebook!
    I actually like the imagery of this. Very creative. Thanks for sharing.


    • chris says:

      Thanks Andy! Glad you like it. I visited your blog and tried to leave a comment. Not sure that it went through. Bravo for doing both NaPoWriMo and the A to Z challenge at the same time. Don’t think I could do it.

  3. Chris, You are an inspiration to me. I am learning so many creative writing techniques from you…thank you. Loved this idea too, I might steal it for future use. Amazing challenge and windfall of creativity at this NaPoWriMo…

    • chris says:

      Feel free to “steal” the idea! Looking forward to reading yours. Maybe we need a hashtag…foundtweetpoetry is too long. FTP isn’t good; I searched it and it’s in use. Maybe just #foundpoetry or #foundtweets. Any good ideas? Would you post on Twitter? I posted both of mine before I put them up here.

  4. mark says:

    There are times when I am listening to the words (I will quite often be holding a pen over paper and not using either) I hear phrases and snippets or two lines that go together but nothing else is included. I’ve learned, when listening, to just write them down. File them away for times when I am writing. Go back, view the puzzle pieces and see what I can make from it. This is what I imagine found poetry to be like. And I vastly prefer your way than the gimmick of a newspaper article. That stikes me as about as interesting as doing a crossword puzzle.

    Some day, I intend to create a found poem or series of them out of song titles by various recording artists. Of course, someday isn’t one of the days of the week ending in day….so, we’ll see when that happens!

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