If You Cut Us, Do We Not Bleed?

Grade 12 YRDSB student Angel Xing created an original spoken word piece for our Town Hall event last October to encapsulate her personal feelings about the cuts to education. She has since performed and shared it numerous times, to great popular success.

Watch her perform her piece here (begin at minute 23): https://www.rogerstv.com/show?lid=12&rid=79&sid=8017&gid=325774


If you cut us do we not bleed?

By Angel Xing


When knife is pressed against tomato skin

It splits and the flesh ruptures

Orange liquid stains steel

And the tomato is no longer whole


When scissors close in on paper

Clean lines separate white pulp

Fine fibres disappear into the air

And the paper is no longer whole


When blade chips away at bark

Each strike brings closer to the core

Splinters fly, dust arise, sap slows

And the tree is no longer whole


When government cuts money spent on education

Classes seat to the fire-hazard max

Educators replaced by e-learning

Creative hands stilled and chained

Standardized testing regress to the mean

Special needs are sought in vain

Extracurriculars, extra particulars

And the students are no longer whole


If you cut us do we not bleed!

Your future generation

Your prospect of salvation

Your very own children

With every dollar you take another dream

A penny for your thoughts - you have stolen what it means

To think, to live, to be.

I think therefore I am yet

Taking away our individuality

Taking away our thinking

Taking away our identity

How can we be?


Tell me is my voice too loud

Is it not something to be proud that I have learned

To speak for myself

Or is that why you are stopping it now

A nuisance


Another wrench in your faulty system


Tell me is my voice too loud

Angry and pained, each word strained

For it is not the first time

Nor the last

That you force our indignance before hearing our pleas


Tell me is my voice too loud

A grating sound piercing the beautiful silence:

Children should be seen and not heard

Compliant and quiet, empty husks for your indoctrination

For your prescription

For your fear of subversion


I am not here to plead

I am not here to entreat

I am here as a messenger of your very own future:

Do not expect a prospective path when you’ve burned the roads

Scorched by greed and incompetence, ash the sole remains.

You reap what you sow and if you sow nothing

Do not be surprised when you are left empty handed during a famine

Fields barren, sterile coal replaced fertile seeds.


You forget one key thing:

We are your future generation

Your prospect of salvation

Your very own children

If you cut us, do we not bleed?