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Words over weapons: When anti-war poems go viral

When you think about the history of things that have gone viral, poetry is not usually what comes to mind. But as the latest surges in violence rage across the world, it turns out that poetry is something folks unite around.

Meet three people whose poems about war have gone viral, and find out how it both fed their purpose and made the world think.


  • Lena Khalaf Tuffaha:  Palestinian American poet, essayist, and translator who has authored three books of poetry. She won the 2018 Washington State Book Award for Poetry for her book “Water & Salt” which contains her viral poem "Running Orders"
  • AnnaLynne McCord: Actress who published a video of her reading a poem about if she had been Vladimir Putin's mother. She is the President of "Together1Heart" which empowers women and children victimized by human-trafficking and sexualized violence
  • Danielle Weisberg: Comedy writer and writer’s assistant who’s worked on CONAN, Krapopolis, and The Simpsons where she was nominated for a WGA Award in Animation. Her work has also been featured in McSweeney’s, Buzzfeed, and The Huffington Post. Her poem was partially inspired by her mother, a school teacher in Topanga, California, who is currently fundraising for her classroom.

Khaleel Rahman, Jessica Severin de Martinez, Meg Fitzgerald, Meg Dalton, and Catie Talarski contributed to this show, with help from our interns, Lateshia Peters, and Joey Morgan.

Audacious with Chion Wolf is available as a podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, Tune In, Listen Notes, or wherever you get your podcasts. Subscribe and never miss an episode.

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Khaleel Rahman is a producer for 'Audacious with Chion Wolf.'
Jessica Severin de Martinez is a producer for Audacious with Chion Wolf.
Meg Fitzgerald is the senior project manager for Radio and Storytelling Originals. She works with Connecticut Public's senior director and talk show producers to ensure our audio stories are represented digitally. She helps strategize digital audience growth with other departments for our radio programs and podcasts. Meg also helps to manage and co-produce special projects like StoryCorps CT, NautiWeek, Where Art Thou?, and other programs produced by our storytelling unit.
Meg Dalton is the director of audio storytelling and talk shows for Connecticut Public where she oversees the station’s talk shows and podcasts, including the limited series 'In Absentia'.
Catie Talarski is Senior Director of Storytelling and Radio Programming at Connecticut Public.
Chion Wolf is the host of Audacious with Chion Wolf on Connecticut Public, featuring conversations with people who have uncommon or misunderstood experiences, conditions, or professions.