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The Boston Globe

Lifestyle

G Cover

Poetry slam fosters hope

Four students stood at the front of the room. Behind them hung a series of framed posters, all featuring large question marks.

The students’ matching white T-shirts were printed with big black exclamation points. Though the contrast was unplanned — the setting was a bright cafeteria at Massachusetts College of Art and Design, and the students were high schoolers from Lowell — the team’s emphatic stage presence was no accident. Like all the teenagers who participate in the Louder Than a Bomb poetry slam, now in its second year in Massachusetts, these students from Lowell’s FreeVerse! team are learning to meet life’s big questions head on, with bravery, enthusiasm, and a fierce sense of community.

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