Lina Ramona Vitkauskas
Yes. I grew up in a Lithuanian household, so poetry was upheld as something all children should read. There were some traditional Lithuanian poets such as Maironis taught at my Lithuanian school, but by the time I was in high school, like every brooding goth kid, I was reading Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath, but I was particularly drawn to Surrealism in general. I would not be exposed to Surrealist or Cubist poetry, however, until about age 19, in college (Breton, Tzara, Mina Loy, Apollonaire). I was introduced to, however, poetry in high school like many US students: to 16th-17th century literature; Byron, Shelley, Shakespeare, then the usual Robert Frost. I'll never forget that in elementary school, the first poems I was introduced to were by Shel Silverstein.
College - around 19. I was writing short stories and gave up. My fragmented, tangential mindset didn't seem to fit the linear, narrative nature of prose.
To make people think. Also to be the unsung legislators (Shelley).