Two Arrowhead Students Win Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets Poetry Contest

Max Gebhard, Reporter

Annually, the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets holds a student poetry contest. The winners in each category get their work published in next year’s Wisconsin poet’s calendar and receive $25 for third place, $50 for second place, and finally $75 for first place.

For the 2018 contest, two students from Arrowhead High School were named winners. Students in English teacher, Elizabeth Jorgensen’s, Creative Writing class were introduced to this opportunity and chose a favorite poem submit to the competition.

“In my classroom, I want students to practice being professional authors. I enjoy sharing a variety of writers’ markets with my students. I was so happy to have two students chosen as winners this year,” Jorgensen said.

Arrowhead junior Isabel Barth’s poem “Walk” won third place. Here is her poem:

i come upon the river

wide and weary,

with its broad and blushing fingers

stroking the earth with motherly tenderness.


the mist from the rushing water races past my ear—

it tastes of sweet mint and smells of almonds.

rapids mingle with their mossy neighbors,

chatter with the rocks, the roots, the robins.


the leaves crunching beneath my feet are purple

and the wind is blue.

chickadees chirp a bright citrus;

the mourning dove, heady lilac.


i greet the crow, who has known the birch

for all of its life. he thinks it to be

a childhood friend, but the tree’s grey roots

dig deeper than he could ever imagine.


nature is bitter orange and vanilla intoxicating;

it is beautiful, delicate temperament.

a living, breathing orchestra, its ever-pulsing heartbeat

sings to the tune of the crystal sun.


“My state of mind while writing this was just a real nice walk along a river when you have nothing on your mind except the nature around you,” said Barth.

“This is a really beautiful poem,” said Arrowhead senior Kenzie Jensen.

“I love the imagery,” said Arrowhead senior Emily Burant.

“Incredible writing, Isabel,” said Arrowhead senior Haley Jackson.

Arrowhead senior Alessia Fedeli’s poem “The Cherry Tree” won second place. Here is her poem:

A solitary star went astray, yawning before the dark,            

hiding; straight onward, it wavers the wink of light, fading.       

My thoughts crowd my mind, and by my window, I shed a tear.  


“My state of mind while writing this was a late night when you can’t fall asleep because something is bothering you,” said Fedeli.

“This poem makes me think deeply,” said Jackson.

“The word choice is incredible,” said Burant.

“The idea of a star yawning is so cute,” said Jensen.

This is not the first time Arrowhead students have been selected as winners in the annual Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets poetry competition.

In 2017, the following awards were given to Arrowhead students: first place was awarded to Kevin Eggert for “A Look Within The Ramen Bowl”; second place was awarded to Jack Wiebusch for “Where I’m From”; and third place was awarded to Natalie Jones for “Where I’m From.” Additional honorable mentions were given to “Redwood Rings” by Max Gebhard; “Memories” by Lucan McCloud; “Mischievous Sundae” by Abbey Lippold; “The Drug” by Karina Smits and “Fun, Frosting, and Family: Memories to Laugh About Later” by Nicole Tarnowski.

In 2016, Arrowhead students Elliot Wehnes and Haley Matticks were named winners.

“I hope to continue having my students submit to the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets poetry competition. It is a great way for Arrowhead students to be recognized for their amazing work and talent,” says Jorgensen. “You can check out the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets annual calendar to see the published students.”