Last year, when a student of Mrs. McCarthy wrote a poem about Fredrick Douglas she knew it would be a perfect candidate for the 2018 Gwendolyn Brooks Youth Poetry Awards (GBYPA) competition and encouraged the 7th grader to enter.
Alexis entered the competition with her poem “Lowlife” about the trials of Douglas’ life. The poem was recognized as an honorable mention out of 225 poems submitted throughout the state.
“Lowlife” is one of the better poems I have written, and I am so proud of it. It shows that dark story that slaves had to go through for freedom and how important equality is for all humans.” said Alexis.
The now 8th-grade student at Oak Lawn-Hometown Middle School is an avid writer and was honored to be recognized by the state for her passion.
“It is so important to me to be known as a good writer, when I found out I made the list I was siked!,” she said.
The Youth Poetry Awards were named for Gwendolyn Brooks, the first African American writer to receive a Pulitzer Prize, and she served as the Illinois Poet Laureate from 1968 to 2000.
Check out Alexis’ poem “Lowlife”