Everybody always ask how I really got started with writing poetry. Well back when I was a shortie my parents always wanted to put me in some summer program, so I would stay out the streets. From summer school, to karate classes, to tumbling. Around the age of 9 or 10, my mom signed me up for summer classes at Kennedy King college. It was like a summer school but for writing and arts. The English/Language class had a final assignment to recite Maya Angelou’s poem, “Still I Rise”. I didn’t even know who that was at the time. As I’m reading my lines, by the way the teacher probably saw something in me because she gave me 4 lines to recite. Side note there was this girl named Nia who also had 4 lines as well, she was pretty as hell she was crush number two. Anyway I’m reading the lines over and over I couldn’t help but to read the whole poem. Every time I read it I understood more and more of what she was saying. The flow of beautiful words and how she put them together was amazing. The day of the recital in front of all of our parents we began. The whole time I was reciting the other lines in my head. When it came to my turn I proudly said my lines, “Just like moons and like suns, with the certainty of tides”, which forced an applause from my mother, all four times. I soon noticed after my last line, “Leaving behind nights of terror and fear, I rise”, that Nia gave me a look and a smile. A week from that day I bought Maya Angelou’s book of poetry. This really opened me up to other poets including, Robert Frost, Nikki Giovanni, Emily Dickinson, and Langston Hughes, just to name a few. I ended up falling in love with their words and how they told a story, had a deep message, or just pure euphoria. I really respected the power of words, it truly inspired me to try to move an audience and here I am today still trying.