Mysia Perry Spoken Word "America"

Mysia Perry, 15, an Open High School student performs an abridged version "America," her spoken word story about her fears and anger growing up in a country plagued with racial inequality. Richmondfreepress.com

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Power in the word

Performing spoken word helps 15-year-old Leslie Reyes deal with the gruesome death she witnessed at age 9 of a 16-year-old friend. With a steady voice, Leslie tells a packed audience of more than 100 people that she watched her best friend die from gunshot wounds in El Salvador. She tells the room of mostly strangers about the “blood-covered gauze and stitched up holes on his shoulder and leg.”