DW: It's crazy, I remember. It was about throwing money at someone you love instead of trying to connect with them as a person. The same bullshit I've been struggling with my whole life, because it's like, you know, this is America. People just buy shit. So, Kopelke said to me, "Wow, there were two rules, and you broke both of them." So the class was clowning me, laughing super hard. Some of them were laughing and poking fun because I wasn't a poet but some of them were assholes talking shit. And you know I'm not really used to be being laughed at, I'm super competitive. I'm really competitive. Like, I just was playing at Hopkins earlier and I stole the ball from an 80-year-old who was on the court. Like, I love him to death, he plays every week—a guy named Ralph. But it was clutch time and yo, I don't want to fucking start my weekend with a loss. It's not gonna happen. So he caught the rebound and, "Oh, I'll talk that Ralph" and I laid it up. So I'm a competitor. I was like, I can't go out like this. So I read everything. Everything by Langston Hughes, everything by Amiri Baraka, and I wanted to come back the next week with some ammo. And then I heard this other dude read a poem that was not really from the place where I'm from, but a real nice cool guy and his name's Justin Sanders. Remember that magazine Artichoke Haircut? He was one of the black dudes who is one of the owners of that. So he read a poem about graffiti and losing one of his friends. And that's when it clicked for me. So I started rapping with him about some things I wanted to write about and he was like, "Go ahead man, you should write that." So I went back and wrote this poem about my man Dre who was a squeegee kid who got killed. When I read it, the whole class was quiet and they was like, "You ain't write that shit." I was like, "I wrote that, right?" So I didn't pay it no mind and then a couple weeks go by and [Kopelke] is like, "I can't stop thinking about that poem. You should get that poem published." And I was like, "Yeah, whatever." And then she actually got it published in the school journal. And some other poems I wrote got published by the Artichoke Haircut people. It still wasn't a thing to me. "OK, cool, I got three poems published." I don't really give a shit about that. I'm not really into it. So after that I went to school.