2023 Poetry Out Loud Competition

2023 Poetry Out Loud Competition

Nadia Libreatori, Staff Writer

Poetry Out Loud is an organization that hosts poetry recitation competitions. Poetry Out Loud is sponsored by the National Endowment of the Arts and is a program used by many schools to prompt interest in poetry and to build public speaking and memorization skills.

Recently, our school held its own Poetry Out Loud competition where competing students 9th-12th were asked to recite three poems by noted poets from memory. These students were Riley Ryen (12th grade), Scarlett Singleton (12th Grade), Aylee Johnston (9th grade), and Madilyn Johnston (9th grade). Riley Ryen was our schools first place winner, however, was unable to attend the regional Poetry Out Loud competition held here in Clearfield at the C.A.S.T building on January 27th. Therefore, our school’s 2nd place winner, Aylee Johnston, went in her place.


CAJSHS’s regional contestant, Aylee Johnston, shared the following words about the 2023 Poetry Out Loud competition:

Q: What poems did you memorize and recite?

Aylee Johnston: “I memorized and recited ‘Medusa’ by Lousie Bogan, ‘Shall Earth No More Inspire Thee’ by Emily Bronte, and ‘To Have Without Holding’ by Marge Piercy.”


Q: How difficult was the preparation for this competition?

Aylee Johnston: “It was kind of difficult with memorization, but overall was pretty easy.”


Q: What was your favorite part from being a contestant?

Aylee Johnston: “My favorite part of being a contestant was being able to share with other people what I was able to memorize and recite.”


Q: What was your least favorite part from being a contestant?

Aylee Johnston: “My least favorite part about being a contestant was waiting for it to be my turn to recite because of my nerves and anticipation.”


Q: Were you surprised to move onto the regional competition?

Aylee Johnston: “I honestly was very surprised to move on because I am only a freshman, and I thought more people would have been interested.”


Q: Overall, how was your experience competing in the 2023 Poetry Out Loud Competition?

Aylee Johnston: “I had an amazing experience and met some wonderful people I wouldn’t have met if I hadn’t participated.”


Q: What piece of advice would you give to someone who is looking into competing in 2024?

Aylee Johnston: “If you are looking to complete you need to find a poem on the anthology that you connect with. When memorizing the poem, remember it’s okay to make mistakes, and show emotion when you recite the poem.”


Source: www.poetryoutloud.org