Who I am

This summer 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students at MLK Academy will be exploring and writing poetry about social issues affecting their communities. For our first poetry lesson we read and discussed “I Am A Black” by Gwendolyn Brooks. In her poem Brooks repeats the phrase “I am ” throughout her poem. I am other than a Hyphenation/I am Kojo. In West Afrika Kojo means Unconquerable/I am A Black./And I capitalize my name. In her poem Brooks not only describes who she is, but also who she isn’t. She doesn’t want others to call her out of her name, or tell her who she needs to be. She is proud to be a black woman.

Inspired by Gwendolyn Brooks’ poem, students wrote their own poems describing who they are as individuals and how they want others to see them. Enjoy these new published poems.


I Am Ameris
By Ameris 

I am a positive minded young Black
African American.
I am intelligent clever and bright
and brilliant.
I am not the product of my environment.


I Am Stephon
By Stephon 

I am Stephon.
I am a person who likes to play football.
I am a person who likes to run
I am a person who likes to play the game.
I am a drawer.
I am a person who used to live in DeKalb, IL.
I am a brother.
I am thirteen.
I am not mean.
I am not bad.
I am not Steven.
I am not always right.
I am not racist.
I am not dumb.


I Am London
By London  

I am helpful.
I am not a bad person.
I am young.
I am not a racist.
I am not an organized person.
I am black.


I Am Elias
By Elias 

I am Elias and I am an African American.
I live in Englewood.
I am a caring and nice friend, helpful and loving.
I am not a mean person.
I am not a violent dude.
I am not a negro.






“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.