Published by Penguin Random House, 2018
To celebrate Barbara Else’s spectacular book, Go Girl: A Storybook of Epic Women, I challenged you to write poems about epic women. I also said epic women might be famous but they might also be the girls and women in our neighbourhoods, in our schools and in our families.
Thank you so much for sending in an epic amount of poems. I couldn’t post them all but I read them all. If I didn’t write you a letter back it is because your email got lost in my system so let me know. And extra thanks to Westmere School and Richmond Road School – you are epic poem writers. You continue to try my challenges and and make new discoveries as you write. I love that!
I am doing an extra post for the poems from Waitakere School.
I loved the way you all picked epic women from your mum or your aunt, Kate Sheppard our pioneering suffragette , Amelia Earhart daring pilot to Maria Tutaia netballer.
I love the way poems can do many things! Words can dart and dash like an agile sports player! They can risk and scoot and sing. Stop on a poem and discover what it is doing because these poems are doing SO MUCH! This is a treasure trove for your ears and eyes so thank you young poets!
I hope Barbara’s book continues to inspire you! I was inspired by all your fabulous poems. Thank you.
Penguin Random House have donated a copy (thank you!) so I am sending Go Girl to Lucca.
Watch out for my June challenge on June 1st.
Check out the audio spots I am posting where you get to hear NZ poets read their poems for children. You can hear Barbara read her a piece on fabulous poet Selina Tusitala Marsh. Selina is an epic woman! She is an epic poet and an epic friend!
t h e p o e m s
My mum helps me with my homework, and she looks after me.
Even when I’m sick, she looks after me.
Even when I go to sleep, she still looks after me.
She dances by herself on the stage, and I am so proud.
She is awesome.
My mum is the best in the world.
Lucca W age 10 Richmond Rd School Samoan Unit
“We want to be treated as ordinary human beings, with feelings, thoughts, desires, aspirations, all requiring opportunities for development…we must be ourselves at all risk.”
Gone down in history,
Urging women to vote,
Changing lives, beliefs, choices and global recognition of women.
Olive Morrison-Lopes Age 10 Westmere School LS7
Benaiah J, Age 10 The Hub Richmond Rd School
In the cockpit
Of a small plane
Rations packed in any spare space
Breathe, calm down
She can do this!
Fly across the vast ocean
Let’s do it again!
But this time the plane is lost
As a hero!
Evangeline, 10, Year 6, ACG Strathallan
Full of great ideas.
Likes music, sometimes it can be a little unusual.
She Likes biking
Is an Animal lover.
Always tries new ideas.
can speak French.
Likes Alice in Wonderland.
Does a range of art,
She enjoys Sewing.
She Inspires me.
Isabelle G Age 10 Westmere School LS 8
Splutter, Splat and Zoom!
Pat Pat Pat on the plane’s metal roof.
Flying through the clouds,
lightning and thunder all around.
She didn’t have much food,
but a can of cold tomato soup.
Flying higher Zoom! Zoom! Zoom!
The crowds were cheering Woo! Woo! Woo!
But then one day when she was out flying,
people thought the papers were lying,
she disappeared like a flash in the night.
It gave the world a massive fright.
Amelia Earhart was an extraordinary pilot brave and strong,
That was my poem, I hope you enjoyed,
even though it was written by a boy!
Jamie G Age:10 LS6 Westmere school
Maisie H 10 Years Old LS8 Westmere School
Lilly Rylev so brave, nice, beautiful, and awfully funny.
Whenever you feel glum she always there to cheer you up!
She started off as a little girl at her kindy and moved up to Westmere School.
After Westmere she was so famous!
(well to me she has always been my famous role model)
Ever since I was born she has been ever so nice, she is
a mean person.
We never get into fights, some people may say it is because we have a huge age gap
(well she is 17 now)
But I know that that’s not the case.
Lilly is a teenager
(which means one thing)
All teenagers always
I mean ALWAYS
go on their PHONE!
It’s Ridiculous but that’s the thing,
when I want some company then I ask her
and of course she comes and makes everything fun again! Her personality is a little cheerful funny weird
(in a cool way)
Next year she is going to Denmark for a year
but nothing is going to stop me and her from still being together.
I love her Very much,
And yes she is My Sister.
Hana Rage 9 LS6 Westmere School
Miss Susie-Jo was a very strict teacher…
because every time when school was almost finished she took us out for a game.
Miss Susie-Jo was the best teacher I have ever met.
Dre T Age 10 Samoan Unit Richmond Rd School
Miss Mareta is the best teacher ever.
Miss Mareta is very strict.
Miss Mareta is fun, modern, cool and a very funny teacher.
When she is angry she growls half the day.
She helps me with my school work every day.
She is very fun to play with.
She can wiggle,
She can dance,
She can move her body heaps.
Now you know why she’s the best teacher ever.
Zephan P Age 10 Samoan Unit Richmond Rd School
Lives in windy wellington
Out of this world
Queen of the Aunties
Ray of sunshine
Xiexie (thank you)
You are awesome, Miranda
Madeleine H Age 9 Westmere School LS6
Eleanor P, 9 year old, LS7, Westmere School
Stanley B Age: 10 Westmere School LS8
Layla A 10 yrs Westmere School LS8
An epic woman doesn’t have to be strong,
or be great at throwing or standing tall.
There might be a woman who is special to you,
who’s kind and loving and giving too.
A friend might be very special to you,
but don’t go on thinking that you have to choose.
You don’t have to choose who’s most special to you,
all woman are special and you are too!
By Azaria R Age 11 School Homeschool
Maria Tutaia, Netball Extraordinaire.
Everybody gives a cheer,
Her shooting is superb,
Her footwork needs no work,
I like to watch her play,
I could do it all day,
I love the way she wears black socks,
How her dress is thin around her middle,
Just thinking about her makes me jiggle,
The way she trains,
Is definitely not lame,
Though it is quite confusing,
That instead of shooting,
She prefers defending,
Olivia P Age : 9 Ls8 Westmere School
Honor M 10 years old Westmere LS8
Sadie C 10 years old Westmere School LS8
Maggie S Westmere school LS7 Age 10
Jasper S Westmere School LS7 age:11
Suzie smashes the circular cricket ball
over the big bumpy boundary rope.
She pulls the shortball and drives the full ball.
She catches the highball and stops the low ball.
She captains the team and is athletic as can be.
Suzie the black ferns captain.
George C Westmere school LS7 age: 11
Gabriel W 10 years Westmere School.
Scarlett S age 9 LS7 Westmere School
The marching image of our land
the Sheppard girl so strong so grand.
there was a time in which people said
women were made to serve.
The days were gray and tireless
But when many unique stand together,
and look fear in the eye,
Even the deepest darkest secrets of life,
are soon to be revealed.
Our nation’s grandest girl
for which we salute and stand tall.
She is the maker of dreams and desires
To tell the story that anything is possible.
Brooke W Westmere school lS7 10 years
Inspires me to dance.
Laughs like crazy.
Yay! she says every day!
Nice and noisy.
Super and Great.
Ok, every day,
Nails everything she tries…
And that is why she is the best friend ever!!!
Hollie B Age: 9 studio: lS7 Westmere School
Poison Ivy is amazing
Poison Ivy likes to sing.
Poison Ivy loves to scare
Poison Ivy has ginger hair.
Poison Ivy is a villain
Poison Ivy wears green.
Poison Ivy has super powers
Poison ivy’s power, is shooting flowers.
Poison Ivy has two friends
Poison Ivy’s evil never ends.
And even though she’s really nasty, she still looks really pretty
She’s strong and clever and is queen of the city!
Emetose L Age 10 The Hub Richmond Rd School
A great friend to have around.
Someone I’m glad I found.
Has a great smile.
Love her style!!!
I can play with her for hours
Nicer then a bunch of flowers.
Perfect bottom to top
Energiser, she will never stop
Tougher than a walnut
Extreme without a doubt
Running out and about
She’s very special to me.
(And now thats a way to rap it up my poem about Ashlin.)
Jemima G Age 9 LS6 Westmere School
Ashlin P Age:10 LS6 Westmere School
Maria Sibylla Merian
She became an artist
She became a writer
She became …
Oh when will she stop?
Yeah! Slap on that canvas
Write on that paper
And look at those bugs
With a magnifying glass
Butterflies out of mud?
no no no!
But Maria knew better.
Lola T Age:10 School: Westmere Class:lS8
Tasmyn Benny the boxer
Smash ! Bash!
She hits her opposition,
as she takes her position.
The uppercut hits her so bad,
she starts to get mad.
Tasmyn Benny is not afraid,
she is brave.
Tasmyn Benny gets her hand held up high,
as she starts to emotionally cry,
that is definitely not a lie.
Tasmyn Benny is a knockout !
Ava W10 years old LS8 Westmere School
Ella C LS8. aged 9. Westmere School.
Henry C LS6 Age 11 Westmere School
Shawna Robinson is brave to race more than 100 miles an hour
Shawna Robinson is very fast when she is in the race
Shawna Robinson is focused to make sure she doesn’t crash
Shawna Robinson is intelligent to know how to not crash
Shawna Robinson is sweaty when she races
Shawna Robinson is quick when she goes into the pit stop
Shawna Robinson is a winner
Ted P Age 10LS6 Westmere School
Sienna Smith Age 9 Ls6 Westmere School
Natural like a tree, she’s older than me.
Inspiring as she is, no one else can be a better friend.
Nicer than Santa on his way, to the UK, carrying toys for the children in his sleigh.
Awesome, more awesome than you think.
Beautiful like a rainbow
Rad red panda.
Lovely like a kitten.
Owesome is awesome.
Wonderful like a poem.
Nina is here, no she’s there in the clouds made of candy floss, picking money off trees, getting fanta out of a tap, then lying on marshmallows to take a nap.
Luella P Age: 9 Class: LS6 School: Westmere
GAIA C Westmere School Age 9 LS8