Student Work

From a SpeakTogether virtual workshop, Talent Unlimited High School, Spring 2020

This poem was composed during a six-week session conducted by author and spoken word artist Sheri Booker, who worked with a class of 10th-grade students to develop their voices. This workshop took place during a global pandemic, a national lockdown, and uprisings across the country to end police brutality and structural racism. Read more about the works in this collection, which are artifacts of this period and a true testament to the vision, creativity, and resilience of these students.

Listen to a recording of the following poem above. 

Gazelle

by Genesis Alcantara

Click click, she walks through the forest
Look majestic creatures
The summer wind breezes by her
Walking with her features

She wants more, she wants to be heard
She’s as blind as a bat
But only her vision is blurred
She wants to be macho

Yet another Lion sees her
She’s graceful and lovely
He reached his arm on her and walks
He whispered “you’ll love me”

As she shoves him away from her
“Why should I?” she questioned
“You’ll do as I say I’m the man”
“Not when the sky is blue”

“Don’t be a Romeo” she said
“I’m not your Juliet”
“You’re my summer warmth, you need me”
“I will not be your pet”

She walks and kicks dirt to his face
Taste of dry dripping dirt
“I am not a object nor yours”
Blue feelings, drowned by hurt

I am not lovely nor graceful

Genesis Alcantara was a sophomore at Talented Unlimited High School in NYC at the time of this recording.

You can navigate their individual poems and listen to recordings of them reciting their stellar works below.