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Photos: Twin Cities SAY WORD! Youth Poetry Festival

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Sha Cage
Sha Cage, one of the organizers of the 2012 Say Word! Youth Poetry Festival, fires up the participants before the start of the competition in Minneapolis on April 21, 2012. She describes the event as "a marathon of poetry and wild applause. It's lots of young people supporting each other."
MPR Photo/Nikki Tundel

Middle and high school students from across the Twin Cities area performed at the SAY WORD! Youth Poetry Festival in Minneapolis, Minn., on April 21, 2012.

The event, presented by the MN Spoken Word Association in collaboration with Plan-It-Hennepin, encourages creativity and hopes to cultivate students' passion for writing. The young poets competed in teams of four to eight members. They performed original works, each about three minutes in length, in front of an audience and a panel of judges. Organizer Sha Cage describes the event as "a marathon of poetry and wild applause."