Tūhono 2022: We Want Your Poems!

Tūhono, Wellington City Libraries’ poetry journal for children and teens, is now open for submissions! Until December 14th, we will be accepting submissions of poetry from young writers aged 5 – 18 in Wellington City. In previous years we have published more than 200 young poets in Tūhono — so this year we’ll again be splitting it into two books, one for kids and one for teens.

Enter here!

Click this button to enter!

Unlike some other poetry journals, having your work accepted in Tūhono is not a competition — as long as you follow the rules of submission, every piece of work that gets sent to us will be published. Tūhono itself — the collection of poetry from young people all over Wellington — will be published as an eBook on OverDrive, and in a limited print run for our libraries, so that everyone with a library card can borrow it and bask in your talent and glory! Check out previous editions of Tūhono on our catalogue here.

Let your poetic thoughts take wing!

Here is all the information you need in order to submit a poem for inclusion in Tūhono 2022:


  • Submissions are open from 1 November – 14 December 2022.
  • The journal will be published and available to borrow from the library in early 2023.



  • Anyone between the ages of 5 and 18 who lives in the Wellington region may participate.
  • You may submit as an individual or as a group.


  • Theme: We want you to write a poem on the theme of “Whakangā | Breath.” Whakangā refers to the taking in of breath, or to the process of breathing. It also calls to mind the idea of inhaling from the world; taking a breath to create calm; taking time to stop, slow down, relax, be.Exactly what you write about in relation to this theme is up to you. You could write a poem about times when you feel calm or things that help you to feel relaxed; or, you could write about things or feelings you experience when you might feel the need to whakangā.We recommend you look up the definitions of the words ‘whakangā‘ and ‘breath‘ in a dictionary to find out all the hidden meanings before you start writing. They don’t mean exactly the same thing — and that is intentional, to give you a wider range of stuff to write about. We can’t wait to see what you come up with!
  • Length: Your poem should not be longer than one A4 page typed, with size 12 font and 1.5 line spacing. Only one poem per person will be accepted.
  • Language: Your poem may be written in English or te reo Māori.


  • We want to give all young people in Wellington the opportunity to have their work published on an accessible platform. We think everyone deserves a platform and the chance to see something they created be part of the library’s collection, alongside all the other great authors and poets represented on our shelves. Tūhono aims to be a uniquely Wellington collection of writing, capturing the thoughts and emotions of kids and teens from all over the city and region across time. We consider ourselves lucky to be able to provide this platform for your creativity to take wing.

Throughout the month of November, we will be posting regular updates on this blog providing inspiration for your writing — so keep your eyes peeled! If you would like more information about Tūhono, you are more than welcome to contact the editors here. Happy writing, everyone!

2 Responses

  1. Megan Hinge 1 December, 2022 / 3:40 pm

    Kia ora, I heard that the submission date for Tuhono had been extended beyond 30 November.
    Can you please clarify the new deadline.
    Ngā mihi 🙂

  2. Stephen Clothier 2 December, 2022 / 12:06 pm

    Kia ora Megan,
    Yes, the submission date has been extended to the 14th of December. I think you found the one location on the website where we hadn’t updated it yet, sorry about that! I’ve updated it now 🙂
    Ngā mihi, ^Stephen

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