Louder Than a Bomb 2013

Series produced by WBEZ

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Just in time for National Poetry Month, Chicago Public Media (WBEZ-Chicago) presents the latest series of studio recordings featuring finalists from the 2013 Louder Than a Bomb Teen Poetry Festival and Competition, including the heart-wrenching "Found Letters to My Granddaughter" and the viral successes "Thick" and "Ray" - all under 3 minutes!

Founded in 2001, the annual "Louder Than A Bomb" teen poetry slam engages schools and community organizations from all over the Chicago area. This friendly competition gathers the best and brightest young writers (age 13-19) from throughout the region with the winners going on to represent Chicago at the national level. Each year since 2005, WBEZ has invited competition Finalists into our studios to record their work.

We present to you 24 new pieces (each just 3 minutes long), exploring themes of race and identity, sexuality and body image, free speech, religion, gun violence, politics, national and international affairs. Enjoy!


Additional Files

25 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption:  2013 Team Finals stage at the Cadillac Palace Theater, Credit: (TimeOut/Jeff Kroll)
Over the past 13 years, Louder than a Bomb, Chicago’s youth poetry competition, has grown from humble roots in the basement of a Division Street th...

Bought by WJSU, KMXT, and WUIS


  • Added: Apr 25, 2013
  • Length: 59:03
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Natalie Richardson, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Natalie Richardson, 17, is a senior at Oak Park and River Forest High School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the third time this ye...

Bought by KGNU and KRZA


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:41
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Malcolm London, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Malcolm London, 19, participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the third time this year. One of Chicago's most remarkable writers, Malcolm masterf...

Bought by KGNU, KRZA, and PRX Remix


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:22
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Walter Payton College Prep Poetry Team, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
"Found Letters to My Granddaughter" is a team piece performed by the poetry team of Walter Payton College Prep: junior Kamaria Woods, 17, senior Ma...

Bought by KGNU, KZYX, and KRZA


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 03:09
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Hannah Srajer, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Hannah Srajer, 18, is a senior at Oak Park and River Forest High School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the second time this year. ...

Bought by KGNU


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 03:01
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Mia Harris, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Mia Harris, 17, is a junior at Gwendolyn Brooks College Preparatory Academy and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the second time this ye...

Bought by KGNU


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:06
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Delaney Miller, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Delaney Miller, 17, is a junior at Oak Park and River Forest High School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the first time this year. ...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:46
Caption: Emma Coleman, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Emma Coleman, 18, wrote this piece about experiences in an Opus Dei Catholic school. Now a senior at Northside College Preparatory High School...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:31
Caption: Ana Marx, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Ana Marx, 16, is a junior at Francis W. Parker School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the second time this year. Exploring the art ...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:43
Caption: Nora Engel-Hall, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Nora Engel-Hall, 17, is a senior at University of Chicago Laboratory High School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the second time th...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:25
Caption: Nina Coomes, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Nina Coomes, 19, is a sophomore at The University of Chicago and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the fifth time this year. Her piece "L...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 03:06
Caption: Kush Thompson, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Kush Thompson, 18, participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the fourth time this year. Her piece "The Blind Side (Live!) or When White Women Rai...

Bought by KGNU


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:30
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Keenan Davis, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Keenan Davis, 19, is a junior at Youth Connection Leadership Academy and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the second time this year. His...

Bought by KGNU


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:06
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Tanya Smith, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Tanya Smith, 18, is a member of the Kuumba Lynx poetry team and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the fourth time this year. Her piece "A...

Bought by KGNU


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 03:02
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Kuumba Lynx, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Kuumba Lynx is a team comprised of poets Jahleigh Bullie, 16, Tanya Smith, 18, Sejahari Saulter-Villegas, 14, and Jaremiah Perry, 18. The WINNERS o...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 03:16
Caption: Kuumba Lynx, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Kuumba Lynx is a team comprised of poets Jahleigh Bullie, 16, Tanya Smith, 18, Sejahari Saulter-Villegas, 14, and Jaremiah Perry, 18. Their group p...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 03:01
Caption: Chelsea Dixon, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Chelsea Dixon, 16, is a sophomore at Oak Park and River Forest High School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the first time this year...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:45
Caption: Camara Brown, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Camara Brown, 17, is a senior at Oak Park and River Forest High School and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the second time this year. H...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:47
Caption: The poets of Oak Park and River Forest High School, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
"We Are Poets" is a team piece that explores different parts of a march. Poets march in protest of a law passed in 2023 forbidding free speech. Per...

  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:54
Caption: Savia Gordon, Credit: (WBEZ/file)
Poet Savia Gordon, 18, is a senior at Gwendolyn Brooks College Preparatory Academy and participated in Louder Than a Bomb for the fourth time this ...

Bought by KSFR


  • Added: Apr 12, 2013
  • Length: 02:52
  • Purchases: 1