3 West Haven students win first prize in poetry contest

WEST HAVEN – Poems written by Julian Esposito, Muhammad Kabila and Rylie Boynton were chosen from more than 100 entries for the top prize in the recent Land Trust of West Haven poetry competition.

The students read their poems at an Earth Day awards ceremony – April 22 – at the Land Trust’s Poetry Post on the Savin Rock promenade, according to a statement from the organization.

Julian Esposito is in third year at Macdrille School. Muhammad Kabila is in his fourth year at Savin Rock school. Rylie Boynton is in eighth grade at Bailey Middle School.


April is National Poetry Month and to celebrate it, the Land Trust of West Haven sponsored the Nature-Themed Poetry Contest.

“The Land Trust is always looking for ways to support children’s environmental education in fun and creative ways,” said Marilyn Wilkes, Vice President of the Land Trust and event coordinator, in the statement. . “It is important to foster a love of nature in children. Poetry is a way for them to explore the beauty they see on the outside and communicate it to the world.

According to Colette Bennett, language arts coordinator and events coordinator for the Board of Education, students have been learning poetry in their classrooms over the past few weeks. In the third and fourth year of each elementary school, students study haiku – a Japanese poetic form that has three lines, with five syllables in the first line, seven in the second and five in the third.

In eighth grade at Bailey Middle School, students study famous nature-themed poems. In order to appreciate how the theme of nature is developed, they identify patterns in language, structure and punctuation, according to the release.

A panel of three judges determined the winning poems: Tony Fusco, who was named West Haven Poet Laureate in April 2019 and is co-chair of the Connecticut Poetry Society; Renny Loisel, chairman of the West Haven Land Trust; and Colette Bennett. Each winner received a $50 gift card and a native plant, which represents the Land Trust’s new native plant initiative, according to the release.

The Land Trust of West Haven is a non-profit organization established to promote the protection and preservation of natural resources and open spaces of public importance in West Haven, including coastal resources, with particular emphasis on the coastline of the Long Island Sound in the general area. of Savin Rock and its lands, waters, wetlands, fauna and flora.

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