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Ridgeland Student Headed to National Poetry Out Loud Contest

By Lawayne Childrey | Published 22 Mar 2012 06:42pm | comments
Kristen Dupard-2012 Poetry Out Loud Winner

A Ridgeland High School senior takes top honors at this year’s statewide Poetry Out Loud competition.   MPB's, Lawayne Childrey attended the finals in Jackson yesterday and has this report.

"He was on the couch watching cars painted with ads for Budweiser follow cars..."

"Whenever Richard Corey went downtown we people on the pavement looked at him. He was a gentleman."

It  began as a competition with more than four thousand Mississippi students. Through the process of local  and regional elimination that number dwindled to nine. Those nine got the chance to  recite their poems in front of a final set of judges. But in the end there could only be one winner.

"Not a poet in an age

Worth crowning;

Not a work deserving bays,

Not a line deserving praise,

Pallas frowning;"

And the 2012 Mississippi Poetry Outline State Champion is Kristen Dupard.

Kristen,  a senior from Ridgeland High School won the judges over with her recitation of "A Fit of Rhyme against Rhyme" by Ben Johnson.

"You don't have to rhyme every poem that you do. You can have free verse poems and different things like that. Don't be redundant but try something new,  try something vibrant but still rhyming is still the root of poetry."

Traditionally English teachers select maybe one poem per year for all of their students to dissect. Ken Bolinsky, state coordinator for Poetry Out Loud says this program allows students to choose their own poems which gives them a deeper level of understanding.

"They're finding out that people across time, across culture, across nations have felt the same feelings they've felt. And these are all great poems from Shakespeare's Queen Elizabeth up to people who wrote poems just last year. They can find poems on any subject from physics to food."

Mississippi's Poetry Out Loud Champion receives a $200 dollar cash prize along with an all expense paid trip for two to Washington DC to participate in the National Contest. Lawayne Childrey, MPB News.

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Kristen Dupard-2012 Poetry Out Loud Winner


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