NEW THING: Woza Woza Poem!

ANNOUNCEMENT: My thanks to Mimi Cross for writing such a lovely article about her experience in my three-hour poetry intensive session at the New Jersey SCBWI state conference in June. I just received a copy of Sprouts, Issue 3, 2010, which carries Mimi’s article. Thanks to Editor-in-Chief Kathy Temean, Executive Editor Anita Nolan, and especially to Mimi. Here is the link to the journal: .

Hello Everyone,

I’m pleased to show you another of those marvelous videos that Jana Smith and her students have created. This one, by Hope, is a real delight. If you like it, please let her know in your comments.
Here is the poem link:

If you are among those who indicated on the survey that you enjoy writing poetry, here’s another challenge. This one comes from South Africa and from none other than our friend Silindile Ntuli, who goes by Soul Dose on her site ( ).

Silindile suggested this new poetry challenge, which is open to adults and students, and shall be known as a Woza Woza Poem. Woza woza is a Zula term for something that has such strong appeal that we find ourselves returning to it again and again. At least I think that’s the definition. If I’m not quite accurate, I trust Silindile to correct me. Little by little she has been teaching me a few words and terms of Zulu.

Here’s the proposition.

1) Today I give you the first line of a poem.
2) After tomorrow’s post is up, someone else must add a line.
3) Post your suggested next line in the comments box.
4) I’ll choose one of your suggested lines to add to the poem.
5) Each day I’ll repeat the process of selecting one of the new proposed lines to add to the growing poem.
6) We’ll do this all month until the final poem is 30 lines long.

That’s it. Sound interesting? Are you hooked?

I think a Woza Woza poem can be composed in verse or in free verse. It can even be a combination of both over the course of the 30 days of November. However, I propose to start this first poem in free verse. Here is my first line.

Today I saw something I’ve never seen before.

Got it? Okay, be thinking about a second line. Tomorrow I’ll expect to see some killer ideas!

My thanks to Silindile for suggesting this new fun challenge. Let’s try our first Woza Woza Poem and see where it leads.


8 comments on “NEW THING: Woza Woza Poem!

  1. Sawubona mngani wami.
    You introduced way better than I could’ve I can’t stop smiling just reading this.. Yes that is the defination of Woza Woza, when something is positive and draws you back again and again and again, like this blog;-)

    Am thinking of the next line.

    • Sawubona dadewethu wami,

      I’m glad I didn’t fail my test!

      And yes, since you invented this new challenge, you must now think of a good line for this first Woza Woza Poem! Maybe Sibahle will inspire you!


  2. David, as I was strolling in the woods today I ‘saw’ that the vibrant colors of the fallen leaves keep changing …. cinnamon/nutmeg/ginger shades of brown were seasoning the forest floor.

    Today I saw something I’ve never seen before.

    A sea of cinnamon swirls surfing the forest floor.


    • Hooray for Cory! I’m so glad to have a player in this Woza Woza Poem.

      I proposed to start this first poem in free verse, but one of the rules of free verse is that it’s free to do anything it needs to do, inclulding rhyme.

      We’re off and running!


    • Hi Mary Nida,

      Glad to see you jump in here. I always enjoy hearing from you. Thanks for the new alternative line to consider!


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