STUDENTS: My native tongue blistered and burned. Cursed wind spit seeds of dead trees, spreading chaos through her skeletal branches.
JEFFREY BROWN: But these teenagers were Native Americans, members of the Spoken Word Club at the Santa Fe Indian School, and their stories--about holding onto a culture--are unlike those heard at most gatherings like this.
HEILERY YUSELEW, student: (speaking native language) I am your Mother Earth.
TIM MCLAUGHLIN: Sing with wings, nod at God. Do you remember that one?
JEFFREY BROWN: The club, which is voluntary, meets every Wednesday night, and students work through the long process from page to stage, writing their poems, memorizing them, rehearsing them.
TIM MCLAUGHLIN: It's very intensive and very formative, and the kids come out as stronger people. And it's a reconnection for the kids to the oral tradition, to the origin.