Calling all poetry lovers — here’s your chance to win some bling bling

The+28th+annual+Why+Mom+Deserves+a+Diamond+contest+stems+from+Diamond+Mike+Watson%27s+idea.+This+image+of+Watson+is+used+on+the+contest+website+as+well+as+on+the+news+release+about+this+year%27s+competition.

The 28th annual Why Mom Deserves a Diamond contest stems from Diamond Mike Watson's idea. This image of Watson is used on the contest website as well as on the news release about this year's competition.

Hanna Oltman

For a chance to win a nearly $600 diamond, elementary to high school students have until Friday, Jan. 17, to enter the 28th annual “Why Mom Deserves a Diamond” contest by writing a poem of 22 words or less to show their appreciation for their own moms.

Those interested in competing for a diamond have to find a sponsoring English teacher, who must fill out the entry form posted on the website, WhyMomDeservesaDiamond.com, under Contest Information and submit a minimum of five contest entries.

“The contest allows kids to express their appreciation for their mothers, teaches them to be powerful writers and prepares them for a lifetime of success by building self-esteem,” according to a news release about the contest.

The competition’s origin stems from a man named Diamond Mike Watson. In an effort to honor Watson’s adoptive mother and birth mother — whom he never met — he established the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond contest in 1993 to give other children a chance to win a gemstone for their mother, according to the news release.

Two grand prize diamond winners will be selected to receive a quarter carat diamond valued at $599, while the first-place winner is awarded an amethyst and second-place winner a garnet.

The winners are selected based on a panel of judges who read the poems and look at their originality and creativity.

Entries must be either dropped off or mailed to and received by Jan. 17 at Why Mom Deserves a Diamond Inc., 1528 Brookhollow Drive, Suite 200, Santa Ana, CA 92705.

After a few weeks, the results will be emailed to teachers, and winning students must go to Why Mom Deserves a Diamond Inc. in Santa Ana to recite their work and pick up their prizes.

“The contest encourages kids to write creatively and teaches them the value of appreciating their mothers and all those who are significant in their lives,” the contest news release states.