Fred Smith, a junior at Vidor (TX) High School, needed to find something written by an author born after 1960 for the Oral Interpretation portion of a prose and poetry competition. He found Francesco Marciuliano’s I Could Pee on This, and Other Poems by Cats (Chronicle Books, August 2012) fit the bill. Smith’s drama teacher, Adam Conrad, reports that his student recently placed first at the District 20 AAAA level Oral Interpretation contest and has advanced to the Regional level that will be held April 20, 2013 at Sam Houston State University, as part of the Texas UIL (University Interscholastic League) Prose and Poetry Competition.
Smith (pictured left) performs the following pieces as part of his program—”I Could Pee on This,” “Seriously,” “Kneel Before Me,” “A Cat Like Me,” “I’m So Mad I Could…,” and “Man’s Best Friend.” Several high school students have chosen the book, which was a YALSA Quick Pick, for their performance in the UIL competition.
“I am extremely flattered that the students would want to use my—excuse me, the cats’—poems in the competition,” Marciuliano (at right), also the writer of the internationally syndicated comic, Sally Forth, told SLJTeen. “Second, I think anything that encourages a greater interest in poetry—whether it be an author using rhythm to evoke an emotive response or a tabby employing meter to recapture tearing through 1,000 sheets of toilet paper—makes this English major very happy indeed. I wish all the participants the best of luck!”
A companion book of dog poems is coming this year, titled I Could Chew on This (Chronicle, July 2013).
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