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Thank you to all of the students who submitted an original poem for the 19th Annual Young Poets Contest!

Join us for an evening of poetry as the winners from each grade read their poems at the Young Poets Award Ceremony on Thursday, May 4 at 6 PM at the Middle School at Parkside.

Visiting Lansing Poet Laureate Masaki Takahashi will present at the award ceremony as well as conduct a free poetry workshop at 4:30 PM Wednesday, May 3 at the MLK Center. This workshop is an opportunity for school-aged youth of all skill levels to explore poetry as a way to express creativity and have fun.

2023 Young Poets Contest Winners


First Place: Megan Manchester, “Flowers”

Second Place: Onyx Ramirez, “Cheesy Day”

Third Place: Hannah Dodds, “Honey”

First Grade

First Place: Lively Hampton, “Morning Song”

Second Place: Anaaya Joshi, “The Library”

Third Place: Aria Allen, “Colors”

Honorable Mention: Emma Uphaus, “Flamingo”

Honorable Mention: Elena Ou, “Mango”

Second Grade

First Place: Juniper Ramirez, “Journey”

Second Place: Abigail Dodds, “Doggy Day”

Third Place: Eliza Hawkins, “Thunderstorm”

Third Grade

First Place: Clara Uphaus, “Icicle”

Second Place: Gemma Cable, “My Family is a Garden”

Honorable Mention: Isaac Kelly, “Turtle”

Honorable Mention: Elijah Loew, “I Am”

Fourth Grade

First Place: Chloe Weston, “Hope”

Second Place: April Ramirez, “Waves and Slaves”

Third Place: McKenna Tingley, “The Poem I Can’t Get Down”

Honorable Mention: Macy Velker, “My Family is a Book”

Fifth Grade

First Place: Layla Claus, “Serene World”

Second Place: Hunter Miller, “No Same Road”

Third Place: Maeve McGee, “Proud of Me”

Honorable Mention: Harley Buck, “Homework”

Sixth Grade

First Place: Olivia Bowsher, “I’m Just Another Middle Schooler”

Second Place: Kolbe Uphaus, “Forest Secrets”

Third Place: Ryder Smith, “Fading”

Honorable Mention: Reagan Mullins, “Can You? I Can”

Honorable Mention: Crispin Oglesby, “Poetry”

Seventh Grade

First Place: Luke Zielinski, “Neighborhoods”

Second Place: Bryce Yezic, “Style”

Third Place: Kenzey Clark, “365 Days”

Honorable Mention: Tobin Sheley, “My Crazy Day”

Eighth Grade

First Place: Michael S. Cantrell, “Yo Bro”

Second Place: Brandon Miller, “The Hostilities of Blood-Shed”

Third Place: Sam Lathers, “Anger”

Honorable Mention: EJ Billinghurst, “Definition”

Ninth Grade

First Place: Lilly Martin, “My Diagnosis”

Second Place: Stacia Manchester, “Your Nobody”

Third Place: Adella Thorrez, “The Long Way Home”

Honorable Mention: Ruby Weed, “Last Summer”

Tenth Grade

First Place: Honesty Laginess, “The Forest”

Second Place: Morgan Meyerhofer, “I Wish Things Could Be Different”

Third Place: Nevaeh Ross, “Won’t Leave <3”

Honorable Mention: Parker Fancher, “Flowers”

Honorable Mention: Emma Brugger, “The Song of Sorry Stars”

Eleventh Grade

First Place: Aria McGinty, “Wild Violets”

Second Place: L'Mear Robinson, “The World”

Third Place: Marielle Metcalf, “The Weeping Willow”

Honorable Mention: Thomas Hays, “Unfinished”

Twelfth Grade

First Place: Asher Feldvary, “The Story of Marbury Hill”

Second Place: Bella Berry, “A Soldier Fighting for Me”