Dec 15, 2023 |

Gravitas Students Shine in Shakespearean Sonnet Competition: Celebrating the Top 3 Submissions

By Sean Riley

DALL-E 3 image of Shakespeare writing a sonnet on a laptop computer
DALL-E 3 image of Shakespeare writing a sonnet on a laptop computer

About the Competition

Last month, we asked Gravitas students to earn points for their houses by participating in a Shakespearean sonnet competition. Though all the submissions were great, our judge, a distinguished poet named Peter Lilly, settled on one winner and two runners-up. 

1st Runner-Up

Our first runner-up is Aithan (7th grade). Here is his sonnet:

When sounds of music vanish from the world,

When nature’s smile has turned into a frown, 

When joy has disappeared, all, from the world,

Then what are we whose hearts are tinted brown?


When roots of love have withered in despair,

When voices of the birds have gone all hoarse,

When death has claimed the last who dare breathe air,

Then what should happen to our Earth now coarse?


When frost has froze the heart once soft and warm,

When sounds of chaos echo through the Earth,

When greed shatters the last of life’s great charm,

Then what can we but shiver by the hearth?


So value every moment of your life,

And live the beauty, always, of your life

2nd Runner-Up

Our second runner-up is Adenike (10th grade). Here is her sonnet:

Oh where’s the warmth of a warm summer day? 

Please ask it why it has deserted me

The sun will no longer come out and play 

He’s hidden from me, so him I can’t see. 


Behind the clouds whom I can’t understand,

And yet they cry for me, they feel my pain

And when the wind sighs I am truly scared 

For she airs what I tried to hide in vain


But must she be the bringer of bad news?

Oh why must she tell me it’s in the past?

The trees’ moods change off my moods that it views

And yet I know ‘cause the birds move so fast


However I know it’s not truly gone

Once more on the Rose your smile remains drawn.

Winning Shakespearean Sonnet

Finally, our winner is Avery (10th grade). Here is his sonnet:

Upon the canvas of life, I paint my view 

With colors of dreams and hopes so bright 

Each stroke tells a story, every hue 

Reflects the tapestry of day and night 


Yet shadows creep when the sun dips away 

And dreams may wither in life’s harsh demand 

But still, through twilight’s gentle, silver-gray 

The soul’s resilience, like stars, will stand. 


Eternal artistry in every heart 

No eraser, nor time, can it erase 

And even in the dusk, we play our part 

Creating moments, love, and boundless grace. 


So long as hearts can feel and spirits see 

In life’s masterpiece, we’ll be forever free.

Thanks to everyone who participated and congratulations to all our winners and thanks to our Humanities teacher, Landon Loftin, for organizing the competition and supporting our student poets. At Gravitas, we believe in holistic education that prepares students with the wisdom and virtue needed to pursue what is true, good, and beautiful. These sonnets are excellent representations of our mission in action. 


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