KILAUEA — Stanley Porteus’ passion for poetry began when he was in the fourth grade in Indonesia. When Stanley’s seventh-grade class at Pu‘ukumu School was asked to write a poem to submit to the 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, he was more than able to handle the task at hand.
Stanley received an honorable mention award from a panel of writers for his poem titled “Hurricane,” classifying the poem among the most outstanding pieces of work submitted from over 330,000 works from middle and high schoolers from across the nation.
“It’s pretty cool. My mom brought home some mail and one was a letter for me and it told me what award I won. I was pretty normal, I guess I was a little excited but when I read about the people who won the award, I was like ‘wow that’s really cool,’” Stanley told The Garden Island.
To be one of the many accomplished writers to be recognized was an uplifting moment for Stanley. The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards has recognized American writers since 1923.
Writers such as Joyce Carol Oates and Sylvia Plath have been recognized by the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards when they were teenagers.
“I’m really happy that ‘Hurricane’ received an award,” Stanley said, “‘Hurricane’ is about someone experiencing a hurricane happening outside their house and about natural disasters that can happen and what a person is experiencing, seeing and hearing.”
The 12-year-old is looking forward to more opportunities to challenge himself and put his writing skills to the test. He said he could’ve done better this time around had he put effort into his work.
“I actually wrote two poems for the awards, but I never got around to submitting the other one so I just had ‘Hurricane.’ I regret forgetting to turn in another one that I think is even better.”