WORD UP! Teen Poetry Slam Announces 2016 Winners after Competition at Central Library

2016 WORD UP! winners from left to right:
 Emma Camp, a sophomore at Alabama School of Fine Arts (1st place); 
Jeralyn Langford, a senior at Clay-Chalkville High School (2nd place); 
and Ellie Goldstein, a junior at Homewood High School (3rd place)

Three of Jefferson County’s most talented young spoken word artists were crowned winners after participating in WORD UP!, a poetry slam for students enrolled in high schools or homeschooled in Jefferson County, on Sunday, April 10, 2016, at the Central Library.

The first place winner ($300 prize) is Ellen Camp, a sophomore at Alabama School of the Fine Arts. Winning the second place $200 prize is Jeralyn Langford, a senior at Clay-Chalkville High School. The third place winner ($150) is Ellis Goldstein, a junior at Homewood High School.

The slam is sponsored by the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) and Real Life Poets, a nonprofit creative writing organization based in Birmingham. Ten students in grades 9 through 12 performed an original work of poetry inspired by the theme “Speak Out!”

Camp’s poem is titled “For Teenaged Girls”; Langford’s “Victim”; while Goldstein performed an original work titled “O Soldier.”

Each participating high school held a preliminary contest, and the winners from each school competed in the WORD UP! competition. The participating schools for this year were as follows: Carver High and Parker High Schools of the Birmingham Public School System; Clay-Chalkville High School, Homewood High School, Alabama School of Fine Arts, Bessemer High School, and Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School.

For more information about WORD UP!, call Haruyo Miyagawa at 205-226-3670, e-mail hm@bham.lib.al.us, or visit the WORD UP! webpage at http://www.jclc.org/wordup.aspx.