Weekly Update

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Helpful advice for aspiring poets

So You Wanna Be a Children’s Poet…

In this informative article, freelance writer Linda Phillips looks at techniques, terminology and genres and offers some sound advice for anyone keen to write poetry for young people.

“The point is to read widely, acquire new skills and techniques, and get busy writing. You’ll never be a ‘wanna-be’ children’s poet again.”



How to Write Poetry for Magazines

Suzanne E. Henshon encourages aspiring poets to write for magazines as a first step on their path to publication.

“Writing poetry for children is exciting and exhilarating. You’ll discover that the gift of words is challenging to develop but wonderful to share. As a poet, you can give young readers lasting memories: poems that will stay in their hearts forever.”


Poetry books for young people

Elizabeth Kennedy recommends several books for poetry readers in the 12+ age group on this site.


I particularly liked the sound of these…

Dark Emperor of the Night, a 2011 John Newbury honour book by Joyce Sidman. Kennedy describes it as “a striking mixture of poetry, science and art”.

Pieces: A Year in Poems and Quilts features 20 poems about nature by Anna Grossnickle Hines, all illustrated by a miniature quilt created by the poet.

 Poems wanted

Do you have a poem for young people to share as our Poem of the Day? I’d love to hear from you. Email me on traffa-m@bigpond.net.au


Time is running out if you want to enter this.

The Caterpillar Poetry PrizeClosing date 31 March 2015

More information at: https://australianchildrenspoetry.com.au/2014/08/25/poetry-competition/

Happy writing!

Poem of the Day


Mystery Man

by Jane Williams


I met a man I didn’t know

But he knew me from go to woe

Your name I think is Paris Post

He said deadpan as eggs on toast


You enjoy Pine and Mountain Breeze

A little wine and too much cheese

Your tan is Airbrush Number One

The colour of your hair is Plum


Who are you I asked by and by

Soothsayer? Psychic? Private eye?

No said the man, nothing so odd

Though mine is an interesting job


I move at dawn from house to house

Not quite as quiet as a mouse

And at each one I find a clue

To him and her and you and you


Strong and quick and light on my feet

I seize the secrets of the streets

I am without apologist …

Your neighbourhood garbologist!


Poem of the Day

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An Alphabet of Magic

by S D Bellhouse


A is for Alchemy

B is for Blizzard

C is for Charms and Chants, but not for wizard

D is for Devices used to bedazzle

E is for Enchanters out on the razzle!

F is for Fairies, fleet of foot and Foretelling

G is for Gnomes, grumpy and cave dwelling

H is for Hemlock, beloved of most wizards

I is for Innards, (entrails and gizzards)

J is for Jealousy, Jinxes and Journeys

K is for Kelp, Kapow and Kahoots

L is for Lessons and Seven League Boots

M is for Magic, Mystery and Mayhem

N is for Nocturnal Necromancer, all must obey him

O is for Owl, far seeing and wise

P is for Physic and Potions to vanish before your eyes

Q is for Quest and Questioning too

R is for Readings of books old and new

S is for Spells, to stun or stupefy

T is for Toadstools, give them a try.

U is for the Unknown, better unseen

V is for Vixen, an evil queen

W is Witches, Warlocks and Wizards

X is for Xenthora, a tree seldom seen

Y is for Yearning to know where you’ve been

Z is for Zephyrs, magical winds

An alphabet of magic is where your journey begins…


Poem of the Day

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by Irene Buckler

My home is not so much a place

Places are for others and not for me

Home is the love on my mother’s face,

A look of love that sets me free


My home is not the sum of stuff

My stuff adds up to nothing much

Home is a bond when times are tough,

My hand in my father’s hand, a touch


My home is not where I sleep at night

I rest in darkness, sleeping anywhere

Home is trust and sharing the light

And staying warm with those who care


My home is a memory, fading fast

Faraway whispers, remind me of when

I lived in a home, a time long past

With friends I will never meet again


My home is in transit; we travel alone

Towards a new life, a new land, a new start

Through spaces and places with faces unknown

My home is within me, deep in my heart.


Poem of the Day

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The Forest


Silent as a mosquito whine just beyond hearing.

A lizard lies languid, tastes the air with its thick blue tongue.

A goanna runs up a gum tree, claws digging into bark.


A scrub turkey dashes across the path.

I sit on the timber seat halfway up the mountain,

careful of the red-back’s nest underneath.


Leaves dance with the first drops of rain. Birds call out.

A tree dribbles sap, sticky as honey. The downpour starts-

I am drenched in the forest’s earthy scent.

Anna Jacobson

Poem of the Day

The Big Black Cat


The big black cat crept across the road,

and finished up under a semi’s load.

It was feeling stiff and sore,

but that’s what cat’s nine lives are for.

So even though it took a whack,

the cat bounced back.


The big black cat crept across the street

and finished up under a giant’s feet.

There were guts and there was gore,

but that’s what cat’s nine lives are for.

So even though it took a smack,

the cat bounced back.


The big black cat should have never played

With an Army tank parade.


Dianne Bates


Poem of the Day


Out of sight


You’re clearly still dizzy

from spinning around,

from constantly stumbling

and hitting the ground.

You’ve slipped on the carpet,

bumped into the chairs

collided with pillars

and tripped down the stairs.

You’ve toppled the urn

that was next to the door.

There are slivers of china

all over the floor.

You’ve booted the table,

knocked books off the shelf.

Consider the trouble

you’re causing yourself.

This game’s a disaster,

so may I advise

you take off the blindfold…

and open your eyes!

Jenny Erlanger