Poem of the Day


Dad and Me


Last night I dreamt that the rain was coming,

It hung in the air; then I heard it drumming,

Skittering across the paddock nearby,

Black clouds marching across the sky,

The drought had ended; now we were free,

And we stood at the window — Dad and me,

Tasting the promise of a new beginning,

Feeling good — watching and grinning.


Our land had a million mouths to fill,

Each craze of cracks led down the hill

To a shallow crater — once a pond,

That now was full and flowing on, beyond,

Into creeks and rivers and out to sea,

But that didn’t matter to Dad and me,

We just prayed that the rain would not stop,

Till our dams were filled, right to the top!


When I awoke, it was a scorching morning,

Closing my eyes, I sat up, yawning,

In thrall of my dream, it seemed to me,

That all would be as I wished it to be,

Green upon green with raindrop splashes,

But my world was still brown – ashes to ashes,

I pulled on my clothes, there was no hurry,

I hid my hurt so that Dad would not worry.


We mended the fences, Dad and me,

They stretched as far as we both could see,

Where stock once grazed, but not for years,

And I confessed to Dad my secret fears –

We were out of luck and the farm was dying,

So I asked him why we kept on trying,

“Son,” he said, “Let me tell you somethin’,

Last night I dreamt that the rain was comin’”.


© Irene Buckler


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Here are this week’s updates.



Current competitions (listed on this site) are now on the main ‘Competitions‘ page – in order of deadline submission date.



The 2014 Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awards, Australia’s largest and oldest poetry writing competition for students.

Closing Date: 30-June 2014



Two bios have been added to our POETS A-Z page.

Mike Lucas

Dianne Ellis

If you are not able to view the ‘drop-down’ listing of poets, all bios can be accessed through the main page here.

Direct link: https://australianchildrenspoetry.com.au/australianpoets/


That’s it for this week.


Di Bates

Poem of the Day


At the zoo

There are lots of good things you can do at the zoo
When you get to the front of the queue at the zoo,
And lots of things you can see too at the zoo
When you’ve managed to work your way through at the zoo.

You can look at the wild kangaroo at the zoo
And the owls that go tahwit-tahwoo at the zoo
And the monkeys that go oo-oo-oo at the zoo,
But there aren’t any cows that go moo at the zoo.

There are llamas that come from Peru at the zoo.
There are Wildebeast known as gnu at the zoo,
But I think it is very untrue at the zoo
That you’ll find a horse in a canoe at the zoo.

The animals don’t use shampoo at the zoo
And the animals don’t eat fondue at the zoo
And the animals don’t do kung fu at the zoo,
But they can cause a hullabaloo at the zoo.

You can watch what the animals chew at the zoo:
They eat grass; they eat meat and bamboo at the zoo.
You can wait till they go to the loo at the zoo
And then watch it come out in their poo at the zoo.

When you’ve seen all there is you can view at the zoo
You had better not stay overdue at the zoo,
Or they might get a beast that is new at the zoo
In a cage – and that beast will be you at the zoo!

© Mike Lucas

Shop 3
7 Gawler Street
Port Noarlunga
SA 5167

Phone/Fax: (0061) 8 8382 3343


Poem of the Day

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Jenolan Caves — Australia’s Underground Fairyland

The Grand Arch holds you spellbound, when first you come to look,
At the wonders of Jenolan, indeed it’s nature’s nook,
Glistening stalactites and stalagmites among beautiful canopies,
Are just below the surface of mountains dressed in trees.

Nature’s gallery of beauty is on display in limestone caves,
Twisting shawls of calcite in majestic rolling waves,
Massive growths contrast with clusters of fragile crystalline,
White, yellow, orange and reddish-brown, oh how the colours shine.

The drip-stones in the River Cave, especially the Minaret,
Show creams and whites of great delight formed by the wet,
The Giant Shawl in Mon Meg’s Chamber is tinted brownish-red,
A beautiful sheet illuminated, fit for any royal bed.

You cross two arched bridges to the Skeleton Cave display,
Aboriginal bones lay scattered by a stream that found its way,
Past the Pillar of Hercules, Jenolan’ s tallest stalagmite,
And the crystalline Bath of Venus backed by straws so very white.

Oh thank you to McKeown for the stock he stole that day,
For his catching by James Whalan led us all to this display,
Jenolan we are awed, by your caverns magically transformed,
Into an exquisite fairyland so beautifully adorned.

© John Williams

Poem of the Day


Bad Sport

In the hush of night
with the door shut tight,
the toilet bowl goes bowling.
The toilet seat grows big flat feet,
and takes itself a’strolling.

But the toilet roll is a sorry soul
which sometimes goes berserk,
when it can’t cavort in toilet sport,
because of paper work.

© Bill Condon
Bill Condon has published several collections of poems including That Smell is My Brother, Rock and Roll Elephants and Don’t Throw Rocks at Chicken Pox. Bill’s latest book is a junior novel, The Simple Things (Allen & Unwin, 2014)

Poet interview

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In the following link you will find a very interesting article from American writer and poet, Kate Coombs, winner of the 2013 Lee Bennett Hopkins  Poetry Award for her poetry collection Water Sings Blue: Ocean Poems (illustrated by Meilo So and published by Chronicle Books). Kate tells how she went about compiling her poems and working with her Chronicle Books’ editor.http://poetryatplay.org/2013/03/01/interview-kate-coombs-winner-of-the-2013-lee-bennett-hopkins-award/

Poem of the Day


No such thing


No such thing as monsters

I’m absolutely sure

As is Mrs Werewolf

Who rents the house next door


No such thing as monsters

A scientific fact

I have it writ in blood

Sincerely signed Count Drac


No such thing as monsters

My sources can’t be wrong

I heard it from a friend

Of a friend of King Kong


No such thing as monsters

The neighbours all agree

Dr Jeckle, Mr Hyde,

The Frankensteins and me


No such thing as monsters

And really I should know

Mummy unwrapped herself

Just now to tell me so!


© Jane Williams

Jane Williams is a writer based in Tasmania. Her most recent book is Days Like These – New and Selected Poems. Samples from her books can be found at www.janewilliams.wordpress.com

Poem of the Day





The beach has changed this year

tall dunes have washed away—

our rock pools dry and bare

… so fall the sands of time.


The surf club walls have lurched

foundations sink and warp

each window pane has cracked

to admit the sands of time.


The jetty timbers creak

and splinter with the tide

with every passing week

sink deep in sands of time.


The camping ground has closed

bright sign has fallen low

weeds thrive where children played

… so fall the sands of time.


© Julie Thorndyke

Poems sought

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The Emma Press is searching for poetry including poems about myths and legends for children.
You can also submit the following kinds of proposals:


1. A full-length poetry pamphlet, unillustrated and no specific theme. The full manuscript will be a maximum of 23 pages of poems.


2. An Emma Press Pick. This should have a theme and be suitable for illustration by Emma Wright. It could be a single narrative poem or 12-16 shorter poems.


3. If you think you have a good feel for what we might like, you’re welcome to drop us an email to run an idea by us for a different poetry pamphlet. Pamphlets for children are fine!


Deadline for these is 31st August. There more information on the site http://theemmapress.com/about/submissions/