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Poetry Out Loud is a national contest sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Poetry Foundation, and in our state, the Tennessee Arts Council.
This contest encourages the nation's youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and recitation. Students also master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.
All Harding students from grades 7-12 memorized and recited one poem in classroom competitions.
Those classroom winners from grades 9-12 then memorized another poem and competed against one another with two recitations before Thanksgiving. Nine students from grades 9-12 were judged the best of the best: Kristen Adair, junior; Abigail Curtis, junior; Micah Dempsey, senior; Kelsey Force, sophomore; Marquavious Moore, junior; Robin Noel, freshman; Morgan Taylor, junior; Cat Trieu, junior; and Kayley Underwood, junior.
Marquavious Moore won with the two poems "Bleeding Heart" by Carmen Giménez Smith and "I Am Offering This Poem" by Jimmy Santiago Baca. He will compete in the state competition held March 19 at the Nashville Children's Theater.
The national Poetry Out Loud competition will be held in Washington D.C. in May.
Special thanks to our judges:
Cara McHugh, Education and Communications manager for Tennessee Shakespeare Company,
Kevin Rogers, co/2005, Director of Theater and Forensics, Bartlett High School
Melanie Semore, Head of Upper School
Dr. Bill Srygley, former Bible and Speech teacher at Harding Academy