CHS Shines in BCPS Haiku Contest


Katrina Bucher, Staff

CHS has been on a roll with literary contests, and the 2018 BCPS Haiku Contest just added to the trend. Out of the 24 haikus selected to be published in a collection, 22 came from Catonsville’s very own creative writing classes taught by Marie Thrailkill. Even more impressive, sophomore Jessica Bartel won the overall first place award for high school entries. 

A haiku is a three-line poem that is composed of a 5-7-5 syllable format. The theme for the contest was “What does reading mean to BCPS”, and students wrote about the effects of reading and why they enjoy it. 

Creative writing student junior Robbie Gorey described the process of writing his haiku for the contest. 

“I brainstormed a lot of ideas about how reading makes me feel, and tried to make the first two lines rhyme, but have the last sentence be punchy and powerful” stated Gorey. 

Bartel really enjoys the creative writing class at CHS. 

“I honestly learn something new every class, and I’m passionate about writing, so it’s a great fit for me personally and a lot of others,” stated Bartel. 


Here’s Bartel’s  winning haiku, “Sand and Paper”: 

My room rocks and sways, 

sun shines bright on salty waves. 

Then I turn the page. 


Although her haiku would suggest otherwise, Bartel reveals that poetry isn’t her favorite thing to compose. 

“Even though I don’t particularly enjoy poetry, I do love writing and expressing myself through writing,” stated Bartel. 

Thrailkill was very impressed with her classes’ way of creating images in the reader’s mind through the haikus and was especially impressed with Bartel’s finished product. 

“The idea of imagery and connecting senses is prominent in creative writing…and I am delighted that so many of my students were selected and executed that skill perfectly, such as Jessica” stated Thrailkill.