11th Sengebau Poetry Competition coming up


The 11th Annual Valentine N. Sengebau is nearing and the Northern Marianas Humanities Council is gearing up and inviting all public and private junior high and high schools in the CNMI to join.

The event will be held at the American Memorial Park Visitors Center Theatre on Oct. 22 starting at 6:30pm.

Humanities Council program officer Eulalia S. Villagomez said a notice of competition that includes detailed information about the event has been sent to private and public school administrators.

“Each school is asked to select two representatives,” Villagomez said.

The deadline to submit the names and poems of their representatives is on Oct. 17 at 4pm.

The competition will have two divisions: junior and senior.

The junior division includes junior high and middle school participants who must recite a poem from Sengebau’s book, Microchild. The poem must be from the Cultural Identity, Politics, or Images sections; and students are asked to give a one- to three-minute introduction explaining why they chose that specific poem.

Under the senior division, high school contestants must submit original poems of any form that does not exceed 250 words. Poems must address themes relating to culture, identity, and/or change in the NMI.

A panel of judges will score submitted poems for content prior to the event.

“For both divisions, recitals will be scored by a panel of judges at the event. Winners will be announced at the conclusion of the final competition,” Villagomez said.

First place in each division will have their names and school names inscribed on perpetual trophies that will be housed at the winning schools until the following year’s competition.

Cash prizes will also be awarded. First place will get $250; second place, $150; and third place, $100.

This competition supports the work of young Micronesian poets and honors the legacy of Micronesia’s foremost poet, Sengebau.

Sengeba spent the last 25 years of his life in his adopted home of Saipan composing dozens of poems that were published in the Micronesian Reporter and the Marianas Variety.

For more information or if your school has not received the notice of competition, contact Villagomez at 235-4785. (PR)

Jun Dayao Dayao
This post is published under the Contributing Author. He/she does not normally work for Saipan Tribune but contributes for a specific topic or series.

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