4 poems for Black History Month by local students

Local elementary through high school students from InsideOut write moving poetry

InsideOut and Local 4 Celebrate Young Voices

In order to celebrate the voices of young local students during Black History Month, Local 4 is working with InsideOut Literary Arts, an organization that helps Detroit’s youth build their literary and academic skills through creative writing.

Below you can read some of the poems written by these local students of various ages in honor of Black History. We’re publishing more throughout the month, so make sure to read them all.

The African Quilt

By Artis (InsideOut Middle School Student)

The Quilt of Africa’s made for my brothers and sisters.

It stretches out vibrant and colorful

all shades of brown, yellow, black

stitched together with gold

the strength of my people.

Keeping us warm and safe.

A quilt to keep you close to your heart

Grandma’s warmth like our soil

deep and rich

calm and sweet like Mother’s voice

soothing. The quilt is vibrant and healthy

like our resilience, peaceful yet strong.

It lulls us to sleep to the land of dreams

where we are truly free.

from My Name is Grief

By Garret (InsideOut Middle School Student)

My name is Grief. I am a Black poet.

I have terror in my voice. I have a

river of sorrows in my heart.

I remain an outspoken human being.

My name is poetic, sing my blackness

like the Lion’s pride.

Metaphoric

By Anthony (InsideOut High School Student)

I am a dragon

I am the flames inside the mouth

I am the beating heart inside of the beast

I am the fiery soul of the beast

I am the victim of the dragon’s wrath

I am the hiker who finds his lair

I am the steam exiting the cave

I am the sharpest tooth in the mouth

I am the blood coursing through its veins.

I Am

A song by Schulze Elementary InsideOut Students

I am a hurricane

Tearing apart

Hold me together

Just let me start

I am a flower

Please help me grow

I need the sun and the water

For my petals to show

Oh, Mother Nature

Please come to me

I need your beautiful sunlight

So that I can breathe

I am a bird

Singing my song

Spreading my wings

For a journey so long

I am a rain cloud

Drifting across the sky

When the sun comes out

I let my rainbow colors fly

Oh, Mother Nature

Please come to me

I need your beautiful sunlight

So that I can breathe


To read more of these poems, go to our Inside Out page!


About InsideOut

Our Mission: to inspire students to think broadly, create bravely, and share their voices with the wider world.

Since 1995, InsideOut Literary Arts has helped over 65,000 of Detroit’s youth build their literary and academic skills through creative writing.

With initial seed funding from Bob Shaye and the Four Friends Foundation, InsideOut was founded in 1995 by former Detroit Public School teacher Dr. Terry Blackhawk. The name InsideOut was chosen by Dr. Blackhawk’s students.

As Detroit’s largest and oldest literary non-profit, InsideOut now serves more than 100 classrooms and community sites annually. Our professional writers continue to help students experiment with words and learn that each unique voice matters – that there is power in “bringing the inside out.”

Learn more about InsideOut here.