A student of Ghana Insternational school, Elise Jensen has been named as the Junior Runner-up of the Queen's Essay Competition 2019.
’ Elise's poem "A place you feel connected to" is a vivid account and celebration of her favourite elements of Ghanaian culture; a welcoming tale of food, dancing, clothing and the ties she feels to the country.
Elise and other winner will come to London for a week of cultural and educational activities culminating in an Awards Ceremony at Buckingham Palace on 31st October 2019.
Read Elise's poem below.
"A place you feel connected to. Places are all different. Some places are nice and some places are not, Some places are cold and some places are hot Some places look fab some places bad, Some places are high and some places are low, Some places are dark some places have glow, But you will never find my ideal place if you look outside Ghana.
Ghana is a place I feel connected to. It is where I would want to spend the rest of my days in, Playing in the beach waters, the warm sun shining on my face, While the cold water splashes on my body, Drinking refreshing coconut juice, Building sand castles.
Culture and tradition are the best things about Ghana. The talking drums, The Kente cloth wrapped around you, The spicy Shito and Ga kenke with tilapia, The statues of Kwame Nkrumah
Ever since we gained our independence we have been proud. Happy, Well mannered, Noble citizens, I am proud of my homeland; My mother land, Ghana
When the days are hot All I can do is sit under a mango tree, drinking cold sobolo whilst listening to Ghanaian music Playing board games Listening to stories
Go to the market sometime. Listen to the different languages, Smell the Smokey fish and sweet smelling onions Taste the warm “bofloat” you buy, Experience what it feels like in Makola market
Next take a trip to Kwame Nkrumah memorial park. He was our first president. The one who led us out of bondage When you are in the park feel the fight. Feel the struggle The lives lost Just for our independence
The colour we wear Soft silky scarfs tied to our heads, Beautiful beads cascades down my neck, Added to it gold jewelry shining in the sun kente regally clothed our bodies Decorated slippers holding our feet Now we walk in slow majestic steps
With our kente we go to festivals Festivals with dancing Festivals with delicious food Odwira, Homowo, Hogbetsotso, Damba All these festivals Celebrated for different reasons Each having a significant meaning
Ghana is filled with open hearts Every where you go Smiles and hearts Warm beautiful Hearts Smiling at you
All foreigners are welcome They are our morning dew
Who would have thought In Ghana. Unlike a lot of countries Women are respected Queen mothers ; ahead of the chief It puts a warmb smile on my face And brightens my gaze
Food is what we need everyday Here in Ghana food, Well let’s just say it’s scrumptious Not only is it healthy, It’s also delicious From kenke, to banku and okro stew, fufu and light soup and many more, Our dishes fill the hungriest of tummies
Ghana, Ghana I break down when I am not with you I have anxiety when stomachaches happen in your body I want to keep you safe I will keep you safe Just like Kwame Nkrumah said: We face neither east nor north: we face forward Ghana I am connected to you indeed.
Head of Public Affairs and Information
Ghana High Commission UK.