T-shirt Campaign Poems

This summer during our t-shirt design process we made poems inspired by the three topics we were investigating: school closing & issues, environmental justice, and youth self-image.

After listening to interviews and with the guidance of Angelique Nixon we produced these three amazing pieces.

the beauty of what’s left…
By: Keeya Williams

the beauty of what’s left… a legacy.
a life.
a story.
a dream.
a dream to be portrayed into something more real.
finally a ranting a seal on what one would call a can that never ever closed.
we never deserved it and neither did you.
but what did you say when “who” chooses you!?
you were blamed but so was she and when you wake up in the morning you’ll be on tv.
we’re trying to discover & yet…
uncover the beauty of whats left!

accustomed they were to the life of the unlearned.
my dream school awaits me… it awaits my return.
the school where everything is relevant & I’m not just going for the hell of it!
I’m learning what was yearning from the start.
the feeling that i couldn’t yank from my heart.
were the teachers get me and get my thrill?
as well as understand when i just feel chill.
now I’m still sitting on this naked hill, still uncovering what we feel.
simply put “the beauty of what’s left”… of what is real!

now we can dance we can sing act out each scene.
each scene from our past that otherwise couldn’t be seen.
blooming in to our true selves rising from the ashes finally gaining our sashes.
our rewards for greatness & what we’ve became.
but please, please believe that we’re not done!
not yet done.. because the beauty of what’s left is still what we’ve won!

Environmental Justice
By: Ashley Lee, Damoni Carter, and Dakari Carter

Detroit is not a wasteland, not a land fill, filled with dirty ghetto people who don’t care about the earth man!
Detroit is not a ghost town, it’s a beautiful place with green space all around!
Detroit is the place for the next urban agricultural movement growing and nurturing gardens.

Green thinking and young minds
We got incinerators causing pollution  and Detroit youth organizations coming up with solutions
Earthworks and Feed’em Freedom  planting gardens on the east side
Detroit summer doing murals and t-shirts designs

True Colors Come Alive
By: Zena Addae

looking from a distance you see rundown buildings, vacant lots
stereotypes that could fit anyone
walking inside
staying for a night
seeing the true color come alive

the “D”, that’s what they call it
pride in their faces when they say it
I don’t understand what is so special-all of it is
gang banging and shoot outs
well, that’s what I hear

is it because your city brought you up like this?
this is the burbs of Detroit
stereotype all Detroiters

what you see on the outside is in no way what you would see if you took those magical medical tools used to cut people up and used them on me.  you would have to look deeper than blood and gore to see what really keeps me alive. the thought that you could think of me being a lesser person than you, just because of where I’m from, really makes me think.

maybe you can only find the bad in me because bad is all you can find in yourself.
yes, I’m from Detroit…and no, I’ve never been shot.
you might be surprised that I plan on going to college.

looking from a distance you see rundown buildings, vacant lots
stereotypes that could fit anyone
walking inside
staying for a night
seeing the true color come alive

About detroitsummer

A youth leadership organization in Detroit, MI
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