On Thursday, November 10, 2011, eighteen students of Charleston County School of the Arts (SOA) participated in the Lowcountry's individual-school level of Poetry Out Loud (POL), a nationally sponsored recitation competition. The winners from each competing high school in the Lowcountry will vie for the regional title, and that winner will go to the state level. Next spring at the national competition, winners from each state will compete to determine the national champion.
I happily served as one of three judges for last Thursday's event, along with Beth Webb Hart and James Lundy. What a difficult task, determining the top competitors among such talent. After two rounds of recitations, we chose a winner, a second-place finalist, and tied finalists for third place. Creative writing instructor Rene Miles was the director of the competition. I'll hold off announcing the SOA winners, in case the school has not released that information to the public yet. Thanks to SOA and all its dedicated, talented POL participants for making this such a truly stunning afternoon of poetry!