August Writing Challenge 10: Manga Poem

10-ell-brownphoto by Ell Brown

We are challenging you to write your own mini anthology of poems this August! To help you, every two days poet Jon Stone will set a new challenge on the Young Poets Network site to spark off a new poem.

Challenge 10: Manga Poem

Every verse begins with sound effects, and the two or three lines that follow it should be written in the style of a thought balloon or speech bubble.

Jon’s example of a Manga poem:


I only meant to rake the itch that troubles my flank.
Now I have snapped this young tree at its stump.

Its river plunge has scattered the dark smears of fish
and stirred those cloudy fronds whose taste is heavy.

Scrump, scrump, scrump.
This forest is dense – I only feel the sun in snatches
charging the blood in my back’s staggered plates.

Bludder. Gerrom, gerrom.
Ah, the urge to tear and chew never leaves me for long.
What’s this? Threads – snarled on my tail-thorns?

Submitting your poem

Jon has now chosen his favourite responses to the August challenges, but you can still use his workshop to spark a new poem and send to one of the opportunities on our Poetry Opportunities Page!


Jon Stone

Jon Stone was born in Derby and currently lives in Whitechapel, London. He is co-creator of the multi-format arts journal Fuselit and micro-anthology publishers Sidekick Books. He won a Society of Authors Eric Gregory Award in 2012 and his collection, School of Forgery (Salt, 2012) is a Poetry Book Society Summer Recommendation. He works as a court transcript editor.

Published August, 2012

4 thoughts on “August Writing Challenge 10: Manga Poem

  1. Here’s a question: is there a limit to how many poems we can submit, or can we submit a poem for each challenge if we want to?

    1. Hi Rachel, you are very welcome to send a poem for each challenge, if you write more than one poem in response to a challenge you can submit them all.

    1. Hi Lisa, glad you like this one – happy writing!
      You could try going back to the Hollywood remake after a few days getting some distance from it, or you might like to try remaking another poem. If not, don’t worry – it’s rare that every poem you try is a success.

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