Category Archives: Poetry

Term 2 on Poetry Box


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I do hope you had a great holiday, made discoveries and enjoyed your free range time.


This term on Poetry Box I am going to:


post a challenge on  the first of the month

post some favourite poems on the last day of the month


post Librarian’s Choice – children’s librarians share a favourite children’s poetry book (if you want to do this email me


post audio clips of children and children’s authors reading poems


post surprising popUP poetry challenges where you only have 48 hours to do it – I will have at least one book for a young poet


post children’s books I love reading in my new feature called In my hammock (from any time or place and any genre)


if you don’t want to miss out scroll down the side bar and join the blog so you get an email when I post anything


happy poetry days!

An ANZAC poem for Poetry Box


The dawn service


I am listening to the dawn

service on National Radio

in the dark. It feels like

I am right there.


The world is a puzzle of dark

and light because we have

peace and war, hungry and fed

greedy and giving, powerful and powerless

meanness and kindness.


The puzzle is hard.


I can hear our cats miaowing for breakfast.

Everything shines after the rain.

I picture the world is not broken.

I picture the world is a big heart.


Paula Green 25 April 2018











April Poetry Challenge: on the way






writing a poem is like riding a bicycle into places you know well, places you are seeing for the first time and places you have to imagine – on the way is the best part of writing a poem!




This is our first poetry challenge of the year. I will also post bits and pieces between now and April 30th when I post some favourite poems.

If you follow my blog you will get an email when I post something new. See sidebar below.

My poetry challenges are open to New Zealand students from Y0 to Y8. Make sure you include the details I ask for below.

This is not a competition but I will send at least one poetry book to someone.



The challenge:         o n    t h e    w a y     poetry


The most important thing for me as a poet is writing the poem.

When I write a poem I am on the way somewhere as I write and I often don’t know where.

I surprise myself every time!



For this challenge I want you to pay attention when you are on the way somewhere and see what you discover.

It might a be a long or a short journey: to the school hall or the shops or the beach or your grandparent’s place or on holiday or another country or to the kitchen or the back fence.



We are often so busy racing to get to our DESTINATION we miss surprising wonderful things on the way.

I keep hearing things that surprise me.

Sometimes I like to stop and stand still and use all my senses to discover something I have never noticed.


Collect sights and sounds and smells and things that happen and use something as the starting point for a poem.

Try writing your poem as though you don’t know how it is going to turn out – so you are writing to discover something.

You might write your poem outside somewhere – half way to your destination.



It might be a list poem

or a short short poem like a haiku or made-up tiny tiny poem

or a poem that tells a story

or a poem that has rhyme on the end of the line

or a poem that showcases magnificent similies

or have strong detail. 


You might use your imagination

and invent what you discover on the way

to somewhere you have never been.


When you try writing have fun, it’s the best thing ever – which is why I am still doing it! Check out my poem below.


HOT TIP: wait a few days before you send your poem so you can listen to it one more time!


Deadline: Friday 27th April

Send to:

Include: your name, year, age and name of school

Important: put on the way poem in the email subject line please so I don’t miss it!!!

I will post some favourites on Monday 30th April.



I got the Northern Explorer from Auckland to Wellington last year and saw the North Island in new ways from the train window!



Northern Explorer


The cloud is a grey clump

above the grey hill

They are whispering secrets

I can’t hear what they are saying

The hill sees herself in the clouds

The clouds see themselves in the hill


Paula Green






A festival of letters to NZ children’s authors: Tom (9) writes to Paula Green



Dear Paula,

Kia ora.  I recommend The Letterbox Cat and other poems, by Paula Green to the children of New Zealand. The book is filled with creative poems.  They are light and bright. They make me write in the night.

This Letterbox Cat, waits for ideas like I do when I am writing.

Paula, how do you know when a poem is the best you can make it?

I wish I was a poem-maker every Monday.

Best wishes,



Tom N (9 years)

Hoon Hay School





A festival of letters to NZ children’s authors: Gretel writes to Joy Cowley



Dear Joy Cowley,

Some of my favourite  books by you are the Greedy Cat ones. I also like Cowshed Christmas. Yuck Soup is one  I like too.

From Gretel, age 8 Richmond Rd School


I am posting letters until March 30th! Festival of letters details here

A festival of letters to NZ children’s authors: letter in memory of Margaret Mahy



Dear Margaret Mahy,

I really do love your books and your poems.

My granny has a giant book of all of your stories.But my favourite two books are: The Witch in the Cherry Tree,  The Man Eating Shark. I really did like the part in the witch in the cherry tree when the witch smelt the cakes in the oven. Before I read that  book I didn’t know that witches liked cakes and colour.

I am so sorry you are not living any more and I wish you could of read this.

Best Wishes


Age:10  Year:6

Richmond Road School