PHOTO: Some of the profound student-poets of St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Academy: Yureidy Rodriguez (l. to r.), Hannah Daisamont, Justin Lowtan, Brianna Martinez, and Giovanni Ramirez. Also in this shot are Vicki Messina (l. to r.), Giedra Kregzdys, Joseph Carpenter (principal), Christine Barbour (of Iron Horse Poetry, the contest’s sponsor), and Michael Kusen. Courtesy of Iron Horse Poetry
By Forum Staff
A Woodhaven poetry group on Monday honored the winners of its poetry contest at a celebration at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Academy.
All St. Thomas students in grades 2 through 8 were assigned to write a poem, according to Iron Horse Poetry, formerly Woodhaven Poetry Society, the competition’s sponsor. Their teachers then chose the best five from each class to be entered into Iron Horse’s contest. Four Iron Horse member poets then selected the winners.
“This joining together of student-poets and our poets contributes to a vibrant poetry community in Woodhaven. It teaches children that poetry is an important and worthwhile form of artistic expression,” said Christine Barbour, Woodhaven resident and founder of the Society. “We are grateful to St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Academy for this opportunity, and to all the students who took the time to compose thoughtful poems.”
Barbour thanked Principal Joseph Carter and said she hopes to have Iron Horse sponsor the St. Thomas contest annually.
Here are the winners:
David Lizano (6th grade) for “Haiku”
Azaria Adams (7th grade) for (untitled poem)
Gilliane Raz (8th grade) for “A Kiss for Every Moment”
Gabriella Agosto (2nd grade) for “Sweet”
Giovanni Ramirez (5th grade) for “Evil Spring”
Brianna Martinez (6th grade) for “My Life”
Andrew Jadan (3rd grade) for “The Parrot”
Troy Watson (4th grade) for “Yellow”
Justin Lowtan (7th grade) for “My Family”
Karen Paniagua (3rd grade) for “Flower”
Hannah Daisamont (5th grade) for “Spring Fever”
Yureidy Rodriguez (8th grade) for “Rose”
Iron Horse Poetry offers a two-hour free workshop every third Tuesday of the month from 6 p.m.–8 p.m. at the Avenue Diner at 91-06 Jamaica Ave. Barbour said the workshop provides respectful critiquing with peer reviews, encourages creative poetry writing, and offers monthly lesson plans that are used as prompts for the following month’s workshop. The organization is also in the process of collecting poems from the poets in the workshop which will be used in the publication of an Iron Horse Poetry Anthology to highlight its work over the past six years.
Barbour said she founded the group to provide a workshop and community for poets from the neighborhood and beyond. The recent renaming—a nod to the trains and public transportation network that connects the boroughs—reflects its aspiration to reach a wider audience and to raise its profile, Barbour added.