A deaf student has won this year's poetry reading competition by signing two classic American poems and one by a British Romantic. Trayshun Holmes-Gournaris of Monmouth, a senior at the Oregon School for the Deaf, was crowned the 2022 Oregon Poetry Out Loud state champion Friday, March 11.
He performed "The Song of the Smoke" by W.E.B. Du Bois, by Maya Angelou and by Thomas Hood, using American Sign Language, presented without subtitles or a voiceover. The competition was held virtually this year because of the pandemic. The students recorded their performances and judges had a few hours to look them over. The announcement was made Friday evening and two students were called to record reaction videos.