Georgia Celebrates 10th Annual Poet Laureate’s Prize

Friday, June 30th, 2023

This week, Georgia’s Poet Laureate, Chelsea Rathburn, in collaboration with Georgia Counc
il for the Arts, announced the winner and finalists of the 10th annual Poet Laureate’s Prize. The prize is awarded for an original poem written by a Georgia high school student. This annual program is designed to encourage students in grades nine through 12 to write original poems and engage in the art form of poetry.  

This year, more than 200 students submitted poems for the 2022-2023 school year, and the students’ grade levels noted below reflect that time period. 



Eniola Badejo – “Right Here” 

Grade 12, Hillgrove High School 

Powder Springs, Cobb County 



(listed in alphabetical order by last name) 


Isabella Fonseca – “Prism” 

Grade 12, Harrison High School 

Kennesaw, Cobb County 


Andrea Lam – “Morning Anemoia 

Grade 12, West Forsyth High School 

Cumming, Forsyth County 


Celina Simone – “The Habits of Strawberries” 

Grade 10, Lambert High School 

Suwanee, Forsyth County 


Jeonghyeon (Erica) Yun “Music Box Ballerina” 

Grade 12, McIntosh High School 

Peachtree City, Fayette County 

“Judging the Poet Laureate’s Prize is a difficult yet rewarding task. Along with celebrating our winner and finalists, I want to recognize the talents and techniques of the fine young poets across the state,” said Georgia Poet Laureate Chelsea Rathburn. “As I read and re-read this year’s entries, I could hear so many individual voices and unique stories, reminding me once again of poetry’s power to connect people across time and space.” 

 Through a partnership with Atlanta Magazine, all winning and finalist poems are featured on its website. To read the poems, click here. 

“Georgia’s Poet Laureate’s Prize has been encouraging participation in the arts for the last 10 years, and we are always amazed by the ingenuity, creativity, and talent of students across the state,” said Georgia Council for the Arts Executive Director Tina Lilly. “Art is about self-expression, and every student who participated in this year’s contest embraced the challenge of making a personal statement through poetry. We are thankful for the many teachers and schools who supported these students along the way.” 

All Georgia high school students are encouraged to participate in this annual competition. Details about the 2024 competition will be available on the Georgia Council for the Arts website in fall 2023. The annual submission deadline is at the beginning of spring. Click here to learn more about the program.