One of the inspirations for this blog comes from No Matter How Loud I Shout: A Year in the Life of Juvenile Court by Edward Humes. He takes his title from a line in a poem written by one of the juveniles he follows in the book:
Who Am I?
Take a trip in my mind/see all that I’ve seen,/and you’d be called a/ beast, not a human being…/F– it, ’cause there’s/ not much I can do,/ there’s no way out, my/ screams have no voice, no/ matter how loud I shout…/ I could be called a/ low life, but life ain’t/ as low as me. I’m/ in juvenile hall headed/ for the penitentiary. — George Trevino, sixteen
My students loved this poem when I tacked in on the bulletin board along with their own writing samples. “Miss, that’s tight,” they’d tell me, and everyone would get up to read the poem. That told me it resonated with them and encouraged me to shout for them. HELP ME. There it is, their shout.