Poetry Box invitation to children in Tāmaki Makaurau

The past week has been tough for everyone in the upper North Island who has been bombarded with rain. And now children can’t go back to school until Tuesday. That is also tough!

I am sending a big bouquet of warm thoughts to everyone, and hope we all stay safe and warm and dry when the next rain dump comes.

I live in West Auckland and am so boosted by the kindness of our communities. So many people have pitched in to help with food, spades, sandbags, tractors, dry paddocks, phone calls, neighbour checks, spare clothes and toys, spare beds, offers to help.

I want to open Poetry Box up for the week in case children would love a chance to get their work on the blog.

If you know a keen young writer and artist in Tāmaki Makaurau who can’t go to school this week but who would love to send me a poem or story or drawing or artwork I will post some on Poetry Box this week. I will post them as I get them (as long as we have power – we did lose it for two days!).

I will choose some children to send a book to.

Deadline: Monday 6th February 9 pm

Topic: whatever you like plus send a little bio of yourself

Include: name, age year, name of school

Send to: paulajoygreen@gmail.com

DON’T FORGET to put STORM challenge in email subject line

Poetry Box 2022 wrap

Goat says “hello”, don’t know where Hedgehog and Horse are!

Dear poetry fans

Time for Poetry Box to snuggle up in its blog basket and have a nap while I recharge my batteries and get through a bump on my recovery road!

I have so loved doing the blog these past few months. It’s a bouquet thank you to all the children, teachers, librarians, authors, readers young and old, who have participated. This blog would be nothing without your magnificent presence.

I am hoping to celebrate some children’s books in a summer reading series once the blog and I wake up! I am also thinking of inviting keen young writers to write summer-postcard poems – can illustrate! Will put invite and details on blog if I do. Would post as they arrive in my email box.

Ah, I especially loved the imagination and visual attention that young readers gave to illustrating poems. The illustrations have got a whole lot of love from you, the reader. It’s the kind of idea I would be keen to repeat.

Wishing you all a warm, safe, happy summer.

Warmly
Paula

Poetry Box children illustrators: Oscar (11) illustrates Melinda Szymanik’s ‘If Fish Could Talk’

By Oscar (11)

If Fish Could Talk

If fish could talk
what would they say?
“I didn’t feel like krill today!
Scoffed watercress and sea cucumber
just before I had my slumber
though you won’t know, my eyes don’t close
whenever I take my sweet repose.”

If fish could talk 
what would they say?
“I didn’t like my lunch today!
That sea cucumber? Big mistake!
It gave me fishy belly ache
I couldn’t sleep at all you see
I think it’s back to krill for me.”

Melinda Szymanik

Oscar D, is 11 years old , Year 6 at Baverstock Oaks Primary School in South Auckland, starting Mission Heights Middle School in 2023. Favourite books: Trubble Town, Wings of Fire- the brightest night. Favourite authors : J K Rowling, Roald Dahl, David Willaim’s and Tui T Sutherland. Other interests : drawing, art , video games, reading and involvement in his cat’s life – his name is Meeno. Favourite places : home, our farm and our beach house at Orewa.

Melinda Szymanik is a Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland based, award-winning writer of picture books, short stories and novels for children and young adults. She also writes poetry for children and grown-ups. Her most recent publications are the picture books Moon and Sun (Upstart Press, 2021), My Elephant is Blue (Penguin, 2021), BatKiwi (Scholastic, 2021) and There Are No Moa, e Hoa: BatKiwi 2 (Scholastic, 2022).

Poetry Box young illustrators: Finley (7) illustrates Paula Green’s ‘Rain’

By Finley (7)


Rainy Day

It’s started raining cats and dogs

It’s started raining bats and frogs

It’s started raining hats and clogs

It’s started raining rats and hogs

And I wish the sun would come out!

Paula Green
from Macaroni Moon and other poems, Random House, 2009

Finley is 7, loves reptiles, amphibians and all animals. He likes reading Dav Pilky’s Dog Man and information books about animals.

Paula Green is poet, children’s author and blogger. Her new books are Little Tales of Hedgehog and Goat (Penguin) and Roar Squeak Purr: A New Zealand treasury of animal poems (Penguin). She likes reading, writing, blogging, baking and going for walks.

Poetry Box children illustrators: Scarlett (6) illustrates Paula Green’s ‘Shoes’

By Scarlett (6)

Shoes

Boat shoes
car shoes
bike shoes
goat shoes
giraffe shoes
kite shoes
soap shoes
fluffy shoes
light shoes
rope shoes
tough shoes
MY SHOES!

Paula Green

(from The Letterbox Cat, Scholastic, 2014)

Scarlett W, Year 1, Age 6, Mt Cook School. She likes Lynley Dodd, Spike Milligan, and Peter Gossage. Her favourite books are My Cat Likes to Hide in Boxes; My Dead Bunny; The Jabberwocky; Bad Jelly the Witch. She likes to write about cats, dragons, and animals. She also likes to draw, paint, watch movies like The Labyrinth, play Minecraft, make origami, and sell her zines at Wellington Zinefest.

Paula Green is poet, children’s author and blogger. Her new books are Little Tales of Hedgehog and Goat (Penguin) and Roar Squeak Purr: A New Zealand treasury of animal poems (Penguin). She likes reading, writing, blogging, baking and going for walks.

Poetry Box young illustrators: Westmere School illustrates Peter Bland’s ‘Visitors’

By Eliana (11)

Visitors

Owls in the attic,
fish in the sink,
cows in the kitchen
raising a stink.

Sheep in the pantry
pigs in the hall,
possums in the bedroom
curled up in a ball.

How did they get here?
Do they think it’s a zoo?
There’s a stag on the stairs
and a goat in the loo.

The din is tremendous
with squeals, howls and moos
and fighting and hooting
and a stamping of hooves.

I’m leaving them to it,
I’ll live in a tent.
They can yell till they burst
and have the place to themselves.

Peter Bland

from The Happy Garden: New & Selected Poems for Children, Steele Roberts, 2018

By Laki (11)

By Nikita (8)

By Cienna (8)

By Gabriella (7)

Eliana C, age 11, Year 6, Westmere School. Books I’m interested in: Wings of Fire, North Wood, Hunger Games. I like Fantasy Fictional Writing. I also like Theater Class, Ballet/Point Work, Gymnastics, Netball, Contemporary.

Laki P, age 11, Year 6, Westmere Primary. Fav Books: The incorrigible children of Ashton Place, Wings of Fire, His Dark Materials. I love writing fiction. Other Interests: Music, Nature/Gardening, Crafts, Art, Sports and Running.

Nikita R age 8, Westmere School. I like playing tennis. My favourite movie: Beetlejuice. My favourite T.V show is Wednesday. My favourite online game is Roblox. My favourite singer is Billie Eilish,Doja cat and Dul Leeper Niki Malj. My favourite YouTubers are Sunnyxmisty,fishy army ibella,mr bootshop.

Cienna M age 8, Westmere School. Favourite hobby: soccer, tennis. Favourite movie: Just a Kight Away. Favourite series: Kipo. Favourite online game: roblox, minecraft. Favourite celebrity: billie eilish, doja cat , young gravy, millie bobby brown, noah schnapp, zendaya. Favourite youtubers: cookie king, unspeakable.

Gabriella S age 7. Favourite book: Dragon Prince. Favourite Movie: Dragon Prince. Favourite pet: Dog. Favourite food: Pizza. I love to watch T.V best of all but I can’t do that all the time so my next favourite is reading.

Paula Green is poet, children’s author and blogger. Her new books are Little Tales of Hedgehog and Goat (Penguin) and Roar Squeak Purr: A New Zealand treasury of animal poems (Penguin). She likes reading, writing, blogging, baking and going for walks.

 

Poetry Box young illustrators Romany (8) illustrates Paula Green’s ‘The Rainbow’

By Romany (8)

The Rainbow

On a blue day

a rainbow

wraps the sky

with bright ribbons

Paula Green
from The Letterbox Cat, Scholastic, 2014

My name is Romany. I am 8 years old. I go to Remuera Primary School. 

My favourite books are the “Oi Dog” and “Oi Frog” books,  as well as books about animals or with animals characters in them. 

I like to write about dogs, cats and wolves and their fun adventures. 

I like to swim, play football and guitar, roller skate, skateboard, scooter and ride my bike. But, my favourite thing is Art and drawing cats, dogs and wolves. 

My favourite places are the zoo, the beach, Rainbow’s End and Motat. I love staying at home and lying on the couch and watching movies or reading a book. 

Paula Green is poet, children’s author and blogger. Her new books are Little Tales of Hedgehog and Goat (Penguin) and Roar Squeak Purr: A New Zealand treasury of animal poems (Penguin). She likes reading, writing, blogging, baking and going for walks.

Poetry Box young illustrators Alair illustrates Paula Green’s ‘Kererū’

By Alair (10)

Kererū

A soupy mix
of sea blue and river green
with her plump white pillow chest
the wood pigeon flies

flap shlip flap shlap

from one tree to the next,
in her hunt for berries
bright red best,

flap shlip flap shlap.

Paula Green

Alair C is 10 and goes to Saint Peter & Paul’s School in Lower Hutt. She loves Raina Telgemeler. She also loves Anime, but spends every moment sketching/drawing.

Paula Green is poet, children’s author and blogger. Her new books are Little Tales of Hedgehog and Goat (Penguin) and Roar Squeak Purr: A New Zealand treasury of animal poems (Penguin). She likes reading, writing, blogging, baking and going for walks.