Way back in Term One, 32 students from Columba College in Dunedin took part in a series of poetry workshops with Sue Wootton. On August 22nd, to celebrate National Poetry Day, a collection of their poems was launched in a book called I lived in the jungle long ago. Here is the introduction and a jungle poem by Sue, and three of the poems in the anthology.
WELCOME On behalf of the 32 intrepid explorers who wrote the poems in this book, I would like to invite you to the Jingle Jangle Jungle. It’s where the words live. These poems are what the explorers brought back. They are the spark in the eye of the creatures that live within us all.
Jingle jangle jungle
A tangle in the jungle and a tingle in our spines
Something creeping up on us, a rustle in the vines
A fizzing in the canopy: the trees are whisking sky
Something pouring down on us, a sorrow, a huge sigh
A crackle just ahead – and gone. A pop, a snap behind
Something slithers out of sight, burrows in the mind
A stretch a kick a flap a clap, a flounce a bounce a creak
Something mutters, something flutters… catch it – let it speak!
At midnight magic animals creep out of their hiding spots.
Where do they hide? I wonder.
But my favourite type is Midnight the unicorn.
She flies everywhere far and wide with me.
Midnight is like midnight on a summer’s night.
SKYLA M (Year 4)
Your golden fur tickles my toes and pokes my eyes
The bright ball touches the sky
and gets trapped in your mouth You run to shade
and I come with you When the rain falls
you are in with me snuggled down in my arms
Then the sun comes out and you and I run out
with me a paw away I love you You are great
You are the golden flash in my black and dull life
ELLICE L(Year 3)
‘Tis the dark that takes the dawn,
so does my old man.
His hand is old, his heart is warm,
and so goes my old man.
With his lips he whispers “Son” –
then the dark has taken my old man.
OSSIAN L (Year 6)