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April Siese

Twitter’s @WrestlingPoetry turns WWE promos into minimalist art

Like poetry in motion.


April Siese

Internet Culture

Posted on Apr 3, 2016   Updated on May 27, 2021, 12:09 am CDT

There’s nothing like a quality wrestling promo. It’s the ultimate calling card for many wrestlers, from legends like Dusty Roads to tag team trio the New Day. A good promo can make or break a wrestler or start a feud. 

It’s also a great way to fire up the creative juices in another venue: the written word, specifically poetry and prose. @WrestlingPoetry transforms iconic mic work from the likes of the Ultimate Warrior and Captain Lou Albano and reimagines it as reformatted, cut-up poetry.

The Twitter account started out pretty low-tech, with a scanned Ultimate Warrior promo uploaded in 2014 to kick things off. Compared to the footage of Warrior calling out Big Boss Man, this offering was surprisingly visceral, almost lovelorn and meditative. The real Ultimate Warrior? Not so much.

Three tweets later, @WrestlingPoetry was reminiscing about all the great classic wrestling he watched as a boy. He thinks the Ultimate Warrior and “Macho Man” Randy Savage were the poet laureates of wrestling. Given that I know just as many people who could recite the opening stanzas of Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl” as those who can run through the entire “Cream of the Crop” promo, it’s safe to say that @WrestlingPoetry might be onto something.

This is the poetry that speaks to the masses. Dusty Rhodes’ “Hard Times” is a natural fit when you consider the content. Rhodes was a wrestler for the people. He admitted that he may not look the part but he’s thankful just the same. He knows your struggles. He knows hard times.

The only thing missing from @WrestlingPoetry is some live reading footage and a rattling bongos sound effect. This Twitter account gets a resounding “hell yeah.” With Wrestlemania 32 almost upon us and a new class of Legends inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, now is definitely the time to craft some new verses from the likes of the Godfather and Chris Jericho.

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*First Published: Apr 3, 2016, 5:09 pm CDT