Education

Middle School Students Read Poems About Sex, Sexism, and Sexuality

Middle school students read poems with mature content at a Wisconsin school, using a $5,000 grant from the public school system to host readings after school.

When people started calling us ‘lesbians’ that kind of sank her. Just a little more weight on top of her shoulders. It scared me that some nights I wouldn’t be there to hold her,” said one girl from Ms. Abigail Swetz’s class at the O’Keeffe Middle School of Madison, Wisconsin, reading the poem from her cell phone.

“And in bed we abbreviate our intentions in weighty osculations,” a boy read from a book, as reported by MacIver News Service. “And my tears over you will be libations creating tiny pools of salty devastation atop your soft spot.”

The open mic segments in which the kids are speaking occur both during and after school, thanks to a $5,000 Spoken Word Grant provided to Swetz by the Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools.

“He was addictive like heroin or cocaine. The type where each time he kissed me, I injected them into my bloodstream,” read another girl.

Another girl rhetorically asked why she is viewed as a “slut” for having sex, when a man is viewed as a “god” for doing the same.

Swetz also reads sometimes.

“Ok, so we’re not at school, so I get to be political” she said during one event. “As if we don’t all know that I support gay marriage.”

After MacIver News Service downloaded the videos and reached out to Swetz and her principal, the teacher set the videos to private.

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