Kenyon’s Annual Poetry Contest is Back!

Melina Espinosa, Editor-in-Chief

This week, Kaiser High School invites students to participate in the 15th annual Kenyon Poetry Contest

Kenyon’s contest is open to sophomores and juniors, which offers them the opportunity to showcase their creative minds and writing skills.

Kenyon College will also be giving out The Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize this month. This means the winner and runner-ups of this contest will have their poems published on Kenyon’s official website and magazine. Additionally, they will receive a full scholarship to the 2023 Kenyon Review Young Writers Workshop next summer in Gambier, OH, on the Kenyon College campus. 

This can provide a start to a student’s writing journey, especially if they’re looking to find a profession in poetry and writing. Kenyon will continue to accept poems until the end of November, which means students will have one month to submit their poems.

“I wanted to participate in this contest because I want to put my work out there for others to read,” said sophomore Nina Martinez. 

Martinez has written multiple poems in the past and, as of recently, her motivation to write is as strong as ever. Having a contest like this available to students not only increases their passion to write and create, but also offers experience if they win. 

“I think it would be a good experience, it’s something I’ve never done before,” Martinez adds. 

For most students, a poetry contest is not always available, these things only come every so often. Being able to take part in it even though the prize is not guaranteed is still a thrill students can enjoy and celebrate. 

“I think I would do this contest again next year, I was interested in the opportunity of a scholarship,” said sophomore Faith Carrillo.

While Carrillo’s history in creating poetry is sparse, this contest brought inspiration to her and allowed her to be more creative. Even students without a past of writing poetry have taken an interest in Kenyon’s contest which is most likely due to the prize awarded to the winners. 

A contest like this is rare, and with only a month to compose the perfect poem students frantically scribble away. Writing is a very crucial skill to have, we see it everywhere in our everyday lives.

A person needs to express themselves in-depth and in great detail for their poetry to really stand out. Which is what makes poetry such a great skill. 

“Poetry isn’t just writing words that rhyme,” Carrillo said, “It’s a way to voice your views and opinions on the world.”

What’s good about poetry is there’s no way to do it wrong, it’s all about feelings and writing our deepest emotions in a beautiful way. Kenyon provides a great chance at success and anyone is able to try. When a student enters the contest and doesn’t win, having the chance to submit a poem again in a year is reassuring. With all the time they have to improve and learn, they’ll come back with more confidence and understanding.