Janae Claxton, a junior at First Baptist School, has been named the 2017 South Carolina Poetry Out Loud state champion. She'll move on to the finals in D.C., held April 24-26 where the winner takes home a $20,000 scholarship. As state champ, Claxton wins $200 and a $500 stipend to purchase poetry books for their school library.
Claxton beat out eight other regional finalists during the state finals
, held on March 11, where competitors had to recite two poems they had memorized during school-wide and regional competitions that took place from Oct.-Jan. Claxton recited Robert Browning's "My Last Duchess
" and Garrett Hongo's "The Legend