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Young poet’s unexpected praise

A budding poet has bloomed.

El Morro fifth-grader Noah Hawkins Rosen has been writing poetry since he was in the third grade, but this summer, his poem, “Inauguration," will be published in the Harvard Educational Review.

“I’ve only written a few poems, and up to now I have been really bad at poetry," 12-year-old Noah said. “But I have been around my mom and her songs and that has helped."

Noah is the son of Leon and Bree Burgess Rosen, founder of “Lagunatics" and noted for the clever lyrics that are the signature of the shows.


The poem was written as an assignment by teacher Jamie Jamieson, who announced the poem’s acceptance into the review "” the only El Morro submittal accepted out of several that were sent to the publication in response to a request for student submissions to a special issue on the election of Barack Obama.

Jamieson had assigned her class to watch the presidential inauguration and write a “found poem" from words and phrases that appealed to the students.

“When she said my name, I was really surprised and I almost fell out of my desk," Noah said. “I had this huge grin, and everyone in the class stared at me.

“They all said it was because the word ‘era’ was in the poem and the Harvard Review liked that word."


Noah and Jamieson were notified of the acceptance of his poem in a letter from the review’s editorial board.

The letter praised Noah for sharing his voice with review readers.

Noah, who has basked since birth in the limelight cast by his adoring mother, has handled his celebrity with aplomb, including interviews by the press.

“It’s been fun to watch his reaction to all the attention," Burgess Rosen said.

“Before it was always shared, but this is his spotlight alone and it’s a different critter."

Although the young poet wasn’t born in a trunk backstage, his mother’s pregnancy was the theme of the 1997 “Lagunatics."

“Ironically, that was the only performance that was not videotaped," Burgess Rosen lamented.

Noah was born Dec. 20, 1997, the day after his grandmother, Violet Ruth Hawkins, died.


“She knew he was going to be named for her," Burgess Rosen said.

When asked if he wanted to make any changes in the poem before it went to press, he asked only to have his middle name included.

Under the publishing contract, the poem cannot be published prior to its appearance in the Harvard Educational Review this summer, Burgess Rosen explained.

Despite his early promise as a wordsmith, Noah does not plan a career in the writing or the theater.

“I am interested in cooking, especially sushi," Noah said. “And that’s my goal. I do a lot of cooking for my parents and friends and I have taken every class at the Culinary Institute."

This summer while others are reading the Harvard Educational Review special edition on the election of President Barack Obama, Noah will be reading cookbooks at a summer culinary camp.