Poetry Slam on Wall Street

April 21, 2009 6:01:49 PM PDT
Poetry replaced quotes on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Monday. As part of a national production in honor of National Poetry Month, 28 students performed their original poetry on the floor of the Exchange at the Third Annual National Poetry Slam.

The event was hosted by America SCORES, which has blended soccer and literacy to promote creative thinking and self-expression.

The Poetry Slam gathers students aged 8 to 12 from across the country to celebrate the power of spoken word and give voice to these young, budding poets on a range of social issues from gangs and violence to family job loss and the economy to global warming.

"Encouraging creative self-expression in the form of spoken word, poetry, or hip-hop among young people is a critical first step to engaging them to bring lasting change to their communities. Too often, children's voices are silenced," said Paul Caccamo, America SCORES president. "The National Poetry Slam! is an opportunity to encourage young people nationwide to get involved. It challenges them to stand up and speak out."

Here are some of the poems:

by Clarence Johnson, age 10, America SCORES Cleveland

Love is your life
It's the only thing
a man would want
for me
it's not
family is,
family to me is love.
I would miss my moms givin' me hugs
If I were out in the streets packing heat.
If I wanted to that would be wrong but
It's easier to turn around and do something Bad
My moms and dad would be sad if I lied then went
To jail for it
Yea it's true I do it wild style
It would be so good if I got a hater to smile
At times it's wild when you're behind those who supposed to be
Treatin' you right
Most of my friends pick fights then blame it on me
The reason I wrote this poem is to show you how
Life could really be for those who are poor
I wish they stop this war.

The Second Depression
by Linda Qin, America SCORES New England

Father announces at dinner,
That he got fired.
It was only one month
After he got hired!

Daddy looked for new jobs
Day after day.
Bad news- mom's
Boss had lowered her pay.

Then the house rent went up,
And our money went down.
Things became costly
All over the town.

Mom- I don't need new sneakers,
I'll keep wearing my old one.
Sister doesn't need new Barbies,
There's other ways to have fun!

It's dinner again,
Our family gathers around.
We say our grace,
Thankful we're safe and sound.

It doesn't matter what will happen,
Everyone will stick together,
We're content with what we have
Anytime, in any weather.

Tomorrow is a brand new day,
New hope is in the air.
Obama's the new president
He'll make this economy fair.

The Change We Need
by Christopher Pulphus America SCORES St. Louis

Mr. President will clean up America
And won't have time to lay
Mr. President only has four years
So let's help in every way.
Mr. President comes in on Tuesday
So let's begin that day
We'll start with Community,
Work up to Environment and then Economy
Barack Obama has won the race
And now he is our President
His model is a "Hope instead of Fear"
He will give us The Change We Need.

The Sky is the Limit
By A'Dora Willis, DC SCORES

The sky is the limit as to what I can do
with faith in God and self-confidence too,
I can be a female boxer
like Laila Ali
or inspire others with my words
just wait and see!

Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, or Martin Luther King, Jr.
are just a few
that stood up for their rights even though others didn't want them to!

I'm sure if they were here
they would tell you they did what they had to do!
They had to make a change?. a difference too!
Trailblazing and paving the way for me and for you!

So I stand before you today
full of hope and a heart full of joy
because I know the sky is the limit as to what I can do!

In case you haven't heard, or perhaps you didn't see??..
Barack Hussein Obama
the first black president
has made HISTORY
This proves that the SKY is truly limitless?.. when it comes to me!!!!

Never Give Up
by Mariana Castro, America SCORES Milwaukee

In memory of all the people we have lost. May they be remembered. Especially Mr. Lane Barr who we have just recently lost at Riley school. He will be missed. May he rest in peace along with all the others.

Never give up when you're feelin' blue because you lost someone. There's hope that you'll gain someone new.

Never give up when the person is gone, because there will always be a new dawn.

Never give up when somethin' goes wrong. Give it another shot to keep movin' on.

Never give up for the sun is shining, with our loved ones there telling us to keep trying.

Never give up when something occurs, because if you give up life will be a blur.

Never give up when something is wrong.

Never give up because YOU are STRONG!!!


ON THE NET: americascores.org