GRACE YOO, 17
Grace Yoo, from Cleveland, Ohio, began her journey of writing in her freshman English class. Yoo’s teacher focused on spoken word poetry and Yoo absolutely fell in love with this form of language. Ever since, she has developed her writing, which led her to a passion for public speaking. Yoo relays her message through the form of spoken word and/or slam poetry. For the past two and a half years, she has made a name for herself by performing at various events in the Northeast Ohio area. Her writing acknowledges the inherent value and dignity of every individual.
Yoo speaks out on topics such as women’s empowerment, mental health awareness, gun control, climate change, school social work importance, and more. She has participated in major events including the 2018 Cleveland March For Our Lives, 2019 School Climate Strike, and the ISSWA School Social Work Conference. Yoo has spoken at fundraisers, sponsored events, panel discussions etc., on a variety of topics, with an underlying message of supporting the movement for change. Yoo’s burning passion is to help people in the best way she knows possible, through conversation. She rallies youth and those young at heart and wants to put a fire in their souls to be better than yesterday, to fight for what is right, and to gain justice for those who have suffered wrongdoing. The youth of the world have the power to change our whole entire planet for the better. Yoo hopes her writing and performances will solidify her place as a youth leader in her generation’s fight for change.
i wonder how many empty seats at a dinner table,
how many moments of silence,
how many funerals,
how many lives it takes,
to grab a country’s attention.
teach your people how to be kind
for they have learned the ease of hate.
mentally scarring those around them,
everyone deserves to feel loved.
maybe then your people wouldn't be filled
with so much
maybe then your people wouldn’t go searching for revenge on
maybe then your people would be sane.
please help us.
by Grace Yoo
your society is a broken record.
repeating the same mistakes over, and over again,
and expecting different results.
this is the definition of insanity.
no wonder your people are going mad.
turning schools into warzones,
students into targets,
and classrooms into murder scenes.
these are your schools.
those are your people.
this is your murder.
one failed attempt at a shoe bomb,
and we take off all of our shoes at the airport.
but over 20 mass school shootings since columbine
and there has been no shift in government urgency