Pow! Zap! Kaboom! Sound Effects in Poetry

For their third virtual poetry lesson Shoesmith students experimented with sound effects in poetry. Together we read Gwendolyn Brooks poem, “Cynthia in the Snow,” where a young girl is using her sense of hearing to describe the beauty of snow. In her poem Brooks incorporates onomatopoeia, using words that imitate sounds we hear in everyday life. It Shushes and hushes, the loudness in the roads/ It flitters-twitters and laughs away from me.

Inspired by Gwendolyn Brooks students wrote poems using onomatopoeia to create their very own sound poems. Usually I only publish three poems per group, but students did such a fantastic job that I decided this time to have four. Enjoy these published poems.


Ms. Wesson’s 5th Grade
Group 1


The Sounds of Rain
Yoshua G.

 The pelting on the ground.
Like a cat running around.
The pitter-patter sound it makes,
reminds me of children playfully clapping their hands.
Drummers play oh so quietly,
like sprinkles on a cupcake.
Pitter-patter like the little drops coming from the
shower head.


The Sounds of Water
Maakai R.

 When I wash my hands the water makes sounds like swoosh
and drip drop drip drop.
It makes me laugh because when I jump in a puddle, the puddle
makes sounds like swish and drip, like I make when I play basketball.
The water goes shhhhhhhhh like something I would say to a baby
when it’s crying.
I drop something in my glass of water drip drop and then I drink it.
My cousin always splashes me with a bottle of water. Sometimes
I laugh, sometimes I get mad.
The water goes fishhhh when it’s cold.
When I put something in my glass of water to make me feel good
and watch it sizzle.


4th of July
Laylaa M.

Bright streaks whiz through the sky.
Thunk! Woosh!.
Brightly colored explosions sizzle and pop, pop, pop.


Living Life
Noemi N.

 Life makes a lot of sounds.
We people are what make them.
Like crashes when you drop a plate and it shatters everywhere.
Life vrooms when you start your car or motorcycle.
Like shhhhhhhhhhhhhhh’s when you are at the beach or Niagara Falls.
Life crunches when you are eating Lay’s potato chips.
Life ding-dongs when you are visiting a friend or a loved one.
Life makes sounds.
You just have to make them..



Ms. Wesson’s 5th Grade
Group 2


The Surprise Party
Brandon L.

I get in my car going home.
My tailpipe goes rm rm rm rm
I get to my house and I turn
the light on flick flick flick flick.
Then I had a surprise party.
Drums playing pow pow and
A DJ typing his computer click
clack click for a good
song to play. The cook is cooking
food in the pan zzzzzzz. Later in the
party, there is a big fight, people
punching each other boom boom.
The they finally stop fighting.
Now, the party is over.


Wind is Brave
Dalylah O.

 Whoosh said the wind.
It’s going to be cold today.
Shhh said the wind while hustling.
I’m brave.
Woo said the human this wind feels good.
While blowing against my window hood.
howl said the wind I sound like a wolf.
Clack clack said the wind.
I sound like a duck but I’m not a duck.
Ahh said a human the sun is too hot.
Swish said the wind here I come
Click said the wind now it is time for me
to go to sleep.


8 Ball  
Michael S.

When I hit the 8 ball it crackles and chuckles.
It depends if I want .to go fast like zoom
When it hits like that it goes kaboom
But when I miss it it’s like ding dong on all sides.
It feels like it is playing a small that used to be
in arcades.
Every time you hit it, pow all over.
WHEN IT HITS it’s like conke bonke.
When I say boom in your face.


Maddysen and the Fan
Maddysen T.

 It whooshes.
It pows.
It blows in the cold on a hot summer day.
When you come home it makes you want to say hooray.
It makes me happy and not so clammy.
Sometimes it makes me want to jump in my pajamas.
It has filters like hot-cold
It makes me laugh and smile sometimes, when we are
about to go outside in the hot sun.
I just want to sit down in the house and wait awhile.
This is my story about Maddy and the fan!
to go to sleep.







“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.