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Ossining's Barkma Takes Top Spot In Poetry Contest

Ossining's Donna Barkma took the top spot in Pelham Public Library's sixth annual James J. Nicholson Political Poetry Contest.
Ossining's Donna Barkma took the top spot in Pelham Public Library's sixth annual James J. Nicholson Political Poetry Contest. Photo Credit: The Daily Voice File Photo

OSSINING, N.Y. -- Ossining's Donna Barkma took the top spot in Pelham Public Library's sixth annual James J. Nicholson Political Poetry Contest.

Barkma's poem "Victorius" will be celebrated next week with a poetry reading and reception.

In the student categories, Pelham’s Jake Soifer and Maria Morrissey, both freshmen at Pelham Memorial High School, tied for the top prize in the high school category for their poems "The Mask of Sincerity" and "E Pluribus Unum," respectively. In addition, freshman Olivia Childs will receive an honorable mention for her poem "War in a Small Village."

There was no top prize in the middle school category this year.

The annual contest was established by Pelham resident Peggy Nicholson and her children in memory of their husband and father. For the sixth consecutive year, the competition has awarded top political poetry submitted in the adult category, open to any resident of Westchester County age 18 or older, and in the student categories, open to students at Pelham Memorial High School and Pelham Middle School.

The reading and reception will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 11, at the Town of Pelham Public Library. It will feature readings by Joshua Mehigan, who served as judge of the adult category this year, along with award recipients.

Mehigan’s poems have been featured in numerous publications, including Poetry, The New York Times, and The New Republic.

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