Skip to main content
Publish date:

Kwansaba: Poetic Forms

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the kwansaba, a form invented by Eugene B. Redmond.

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the kwansaba, a form invented by Eugene B. Redmond.

Image placeholder title

Kwansaba Poems

The kwansaba is a poetic form invented by Eugene B. Redmond in 1995. It was inspired by seven-day holiday of Kwanzaa, including its seven principles of unity, self-determination, collective work, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.

Here are the guidelines:

  • Poem of praise
  • Seven lines
  • Seven words per line
  • No word exceeds seven letters
  • Celebration of family and African-American culture

Write a poem for a chance at $1,000 and publication!

Image placeholder title

Calling all poets!

We're on the look out for poems of all styles–rhyming, free verse, haiku, and more–for the 14th Annual Writer's Digest Poetry Awards! This is the only Writer's Digest competition exclusively for poets.

Enter any poem 32 lines or less for your chance to win $1,000 in cash and publication in a future issue of Writer's Digest magazine.

Deadline is November 1, 2019. So enter today!

Click to continue.

Here’s my attempt at a kwansaba:

Celebration, by Robert Lee Brewer

- for the Iberosi family

When memory unfolds moments in my mind,
these are the moments I hold close--
being invited to rejoice in the baptism
of twin girls in a foreign church
singing and dancing in a foreign tongue
but sharing the common joy of life
and a faith in a loving future...

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Ending Your Story Too Soon

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Ending Your Story Too Soon

The Writer's Digest team has witnessed many writing mistakes over the years, so we started this series to help identify them for other writers (along with correction strategies). This week's writing mistake is ending your story too soon.

FightWrite™: Fight Scenes with Magic

FightWrite™: Fight Scenes With Magic

In this post, trained fighter and author Carla Hoch explores the process of writing fight scenes with magic—how to make the unbelievable believable, how limitations bring us closer to our characters, and more.

Invoice Template for Freelance Writers

Invoice Template for Freelance Writers

If you're a freelance writer who is able to secure assignments, an essential tool you'll need is an invoice. In this post, Writer's Digest Senior Editor Robert Lee Brewer shares a very basic and easy invoice template for freelance writers to get the job done (and get paid).

3 Things Being a Broadway Wig Master Taught Me About Storytelling

3 Things Being a Broadway Wig Master Taught Me About Storytelling

A career behind the curtain helped Amy Neswald in creating her own stories. Here, the author shares 3 things being a broadway wig master taught her about storytelling.

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Out of Control

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Out of Control

Every good story needs a nice (or not so nice) turn or two to keep it interesting. This week, let things get a little out of control.

November PAD Chapbook Challenge

2021 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Next Steps

Here are the final steps for the 14th annual November PAD Chapbook Challenge! Use December and the beginning of January to revise and collect your poems into a chapbook manuscript. Here are some tips and guidelines.

NaNoWriMo’s Over … Now What?

NaNoWriMo’s Over … Now What?

After an intense writing challenge, you might feel a little lost. Here are some tips from Managing Editor and fellow Wrimo Moriah Richard for capitalizing on your momentum.

Ian Douglas: On Telling the Truth in Science Fiction

Ian Douglas: On Telling the Truth in Science Fiction

New York Times bestselling author Ian Douglas discusses how he incorporated implausible conspiracy theories to uncover the truth in his new science fiction novel, Alien Hostiles.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 589

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a yesterday poem.