Since its founding in 1995 by Terry M. Blackhawk, PhD., the InsideOut Literary Arts Project has nourished and published countless young writers at 25 elementary, middle, and high schools in the city. InsideOut inspired The Citywide Poets group and sponsors poetry slams and readings around the city. Amid paying office rent and salaries, InsideOut manages to publish and print 350 anthologies per school. Students submit poetry and art to the publications, and learn details of the publishing process, right down to the graphic design of the cover. Program Director Robert Fanning orchestrates the school residencies and trains resident writers, who are local professional writers and often college students with an interest in teaching and sharing their own creative process. Supported by a talented and hard working staff of artists, writers, graphic designers, and office administrators, Fanning heads up special events and collaborations for the program and makes's Kid Lit! possible.

With strong community support the InsideOut Literary Arts Project has thrived over the last decade and will continue to inspire writers in the years to come and we couldn't be more pleased to help spread the word and words about this terrific program. — Eric Novack, Editor

You can learn more about InsideOut at

Wetness of the World

by Lamont Howard
Glazer Elementary School

Teacher: Ms. Davidson
InsideOut Writer-in-Residence: Suzanne Scarfone



I am a blue thundering sky
I am the wetness
of the world
people shall hear my roar
I am the wind of the universe
my tornado twists like a
basketball in the air
I am the sky of the world
in the morning I wake
at sunset I'm tired
at night I sleep
I am the nature of the world

Wheel of Colors

by Torey Brown
Hutchins Middle School

Teacher: Ms. Felecia Branch
InsideOut Writer-in-Residence: Emily Maderal


Flying into a world of colors
Turning around with ribbons of purple
Enlarging balloons of the letters of my name
Jumping rope with blue
Hiding in a place I feel safe
Inflated shapes scattered across the room
Levitating letters
Dancing letters show their skill
Peeking around the patches, I write


by Sarah Strong
Mumford High School

Teacher: Ms. Robinson
Writer-in-Residence: Matthew Olzmann


Suppose you were me and I was the sun.
Would you shine as the full moon on a dark night?
Pretend mountains could flow
and rivers could stand tall.
What if books could talk and we could be read,
not by our speech, but by our appearances.
Suppose you could stop being able to walk
because you ran out of gas and that cars
could criticize people and their opinions.
Pretend you were a stage and people walked
all over you as if you were nothing at all.
What if hands could talk and feet could listen -
do you know what they would talk about?
Suppose the impossible became possible
and we could make all our drastic images
become reality.


All Poems appear courtesy of InsideOut Literary Arts Project. "Wetness of the World" appears in Volume 4 of "Welcome to the Poetry Palace" the literary magazine of Glazer Elementary School. "Wheel of Colors" appears in Volume 3 of "Wear Consciousness" the literary magazine of Hutchins Middle School. "Suppose" appears in Volume 19 of "Style!" the literary magazine of Mumford High School.

To purchase a copy of any of the books listed above, or to see more InsideOut publications, visit

© 2002