on goosebumps, hip-hop education, and performing for kendrick lamar

This is an incredible reflection on Kendrick Lamar’s visit to our high school, written by one of my seniors – Hamza Qureshi. Many of you saw him on NPR’s video coverage, reading his poem, “An Urdu Love,” which was inspired by Kendrick’s song, “Complexion (A Zulu Love). Hamza explores colorism in the South Asian community in a powerful way. This is definitely worth the read!

hamza qureshi

Allow me to set up the scene. It’s around 2:00 PM on an overcast Monday in June; I’m standing in a humid high school gymnasium staring at the expanse of white chairs that litter the room in a used disarray. It’s empty for the most part, barring a few police officers, some other students, and a lone reporter searching for the notepad he’d spent a good part of the morning scribbling on. Kendrick Lamar, perhaps the most prolific hip-hop artist of our generation, has just left the building. I’m sitting down on a stage – the same one he’d just performed on – trying to process the surreal scene I was in.

It started in April, when I and the rest of the High Tech High School Slam Poetry Club met for our weekly meeting. Our teacher, Mr. Mooney, was smiling bigger than usual. Maybe it was the fact that…

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One comment

  1. A million and one shades of peng

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