St. Luke’s Sophomore Maria Juran has been honored with three Golden Keys for her poetry collections at the 90th Annual Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. The 100 plus regional panels of professional jurors anonymously adjudicated over 200,000 works of art and writing. Only 5 to 7% of these participants earned Gold Keys.
“The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers identifies teenagers with exceptional artistic and literary talent and brings their remarkable work to a national audience through The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards – 90 years of Creativity.” Richard Avedon, Sylvia Plath, Lena Dunham, Truman Capote, Andy Warhol, and Zac Posen, to name a few, were all winners of this prestigious award when they were teenagers.
Juran, an honors student across her academic classes and varsity cross country athlete from South Salem, NY remarked, “I am very honored to have been recognized for my work and to have made it this far in the competition. I am also very grateful to my teachers, including Mr. Henson, Mr. Flachsbart and Mr. Carroll, for their roles as mentors to me.” And when asked why she likes to write poetry, she added, “I find creative writing to be the most precise and satisfying way to express my voice.” Maria has been invited to read at St. Luke’s Spring Fest during the evening of the arts poetry reading on April 26 (a special honor, unprecedented, for a 10th grader).
St. Luke’s English teacher Stephen Flachsbart said, "Maria's poetry is exceptional. It's profound, not just for a 10th grader but for the adult sphere. We may all be going to Juran poetry readings and studying her in anthologies in another few years. She's a major asset to both our English class and the LitMag staff."
Maria’s three poetry collections, that received Gold Key recognition at the regional level are included in the pool of work that is judged among Gold Key winning work from across the country this spring.
Coda 1: Before
By Maria Juran ’15
is the cruelest savor--
iron in your mouth,
tongue stroking along your teeth.
If you can remember
the dangling lights
shaped like seed pods
and the empty
no longer there.