Contest winners gather to share poems about peace at Fairfield University



The winners of a "Poetry for Peace" contest, some 70 children from Bridgeport and Fairfield in grades Kindergarten through 8th grade, will read their poetry at the Aloysius P. Kelley Center on the Fairfield University campus on Tuesday, Jan. 18, from 6 to 8 p.m. The winning poetry, selected from more than 1100 entries, has been published in a book of poems to be distributed at the event. The public is welcome to attend.

In its third year, the contest is designed to encourage discussion of how the imaginative and original language of poetry relates to the creation of peace. Event coordinators said the contest provides an opportunity for young writers to express their own concepts of peace through the creative act of composing original poems. Students were asked to write a poem on the theme of peace, however they define, experience, or envision it, and submit their work to Fairfield's English department.

Image: Nels Pearson"The goal was simply to give students the opportunity to reflect creatively on the theme of peace at a time when so much of what they encounter in the media is dominated by images of violence and overwhelmed by the rhetoric of opposition and entrenched positions," said Nels Pearson, an assistant professor of English and co-coordinator of the "Poetry for Peace" contest.

The children's entries were placed into three divisions, Kindergarten-2nd grades, 3rd-5th grades, and 6th-8th grades. First, Second, and Third place winners were selected, as well as some 'judges' favorites' for each flight.

Fairfield University's Humanities Institute; the Offices of Academic Engagement and Student Development; the Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration committee; the Peace and Justice Studies program; and the Department of English sponsored the contest.

The Fairfield University "Poetry for Peace" Contest was announced in September 2010. Entries were submitted in November and judged by a committee of faculty and students from the English and Education departments.

For more information contact event coordinators Nels Pearson or Jerelyn Johnson at (203) 254-2810 or e-mail at npearson@fairfield.edu or jjohnson@fairfield.edu.

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Media Contact: Mark Gregorio, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, mgregorio1@fairfield.edu

Posted on January 10, 2011

Vol. 43, No. 164