Poem of the Day


Magic making

by Jenny Erlanger


Half a slug, a beetle’s bum,

a spoon of slime, a cup of scum,

a centipede, a rotten plum,

my special, magic tea.


A final pinch of possum poo

and that completes my witch’s brew

but as to what this brew will do…

Here, try some and we’ll see.


Poem of the Day


Beach cones

by Monty Edwards


The shapes I like are conical. They taper to the tip.

Perhaps you’ve seen some shells like that when going for a dip.

Such shells are very pretty and they’re great fun to collect:

Their range of colours, streaks and spots – much more than you’d expect!


While at the beach you may well see a different kind of cone:

Far bigger, in a lifeguard’s hand, it’s called a megaphone.

Through this his booming voice is heard to call us back to shore.

It’s warning us of danger we’d be foolish to ignore.


When heading home, our swimming done, one final cone I eat.

I’m sure you’ve guessed just what it is, so icy cold and sweet!

Then as I lick the one I pick, my tongue can taste and test.

Of all the cones I’ve ever known, I like an ice-cream best!

  • Submitted in response to Poetry Prompt #3


Monty says: With no clear direction, I made a list of shapes, along with articles that either embodied them or words that rhymed with them. I wanted to avoid the familiar square/cube and circle/sphere and work with something specific that was less common and also three dimensional. From my list of words and ideas the resources for a seaside scenario emerged featuring the cone.


Poem of the Day


Family tree

by Bill Condon


The mother was a ghost gum,

a really terrific tree-mum.

The father was a noble oak,

a shining prince of tree-dom.

You’d think with a family tree like that,

the offshoot would have to be a winner.

Instead he was a toothpick,

who lived in fear of dinner.

  • Submitted in response to Poetry Prompt #2



Bill says: I wrote this years ago when I was very silly. Nothing’s changed.


Poem of the Day


The holiday is over

by Carolyn Eldridge-Alfonzetti


Bone tired

Mum bends over yawning suitcases;

sorts by colour

the jumble

of sea-scented clothes.


The groaning washer

shudders in sympathy

as tiny souvenir shells

swim from sand-peppered pockets

to tinkle and swirl

in foreign

lemon-boosted foam.

  • First published in The School Magazine (Touchdown, April 2011)


Poetry prompt #4

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So many wonderful poems have been submitted in response to the Poetry Prompts I’ve been posting each Monday. Thank you for sharing them and please keep them coming. It’s so exciting checking my in box each day to see the latest arrivals. If you’ve missed a prompt, you can catch up any time you like as long as you put a note on your poem to that effect. This week’s prompt is ‘Texture’, so have fun with it. Send your submissions to me at traffa-m@bigpond.net.au as a Word document attachment and add a personal note about why or how you chose to write this particular poem.

Happy writing!



Poem of the Day


An Interview with T

by Vivienne Nicoll-Hatton


You really want to know about me?

I’m not too ordinary for you?

I mean, I’m everywhere.

Even in Scrabble, my tiles are worth one, not two!


I like to keep slim, like my friends I.

E & F, and L, too,

Though they all look a bit unbalanced to me.

My horizontal hat is beautifully symmetrical.

You have noticed, haven’t you?


Being the 20th letter and so towards the end of the alphabet

means nothing!

I am the most frequently used letter

after those vowels, a, e, I and u.

And I’m not fussy about where I go inside a word,

Beginning, middle or end, doubled, to name just a few.


I’m a bit of a softy,

or at least the sound I represent is.

Toddlers can speak it by the age of two,

A gentle tap of the tongue to the roof of the mouth, behind the front teeth,

But don’t use your voice, you’ll get my cousin D’s sound if you do!


Do other letters want to hang about with me?

Yes, there are a few.

There are the vowels, and also some consonants

H is probably my best friend, because when he’s beside me to the left

We do this weird thing with G, you know, eight, night, and tight.

But when you put him to my right, we represent another sound, no, two.

Listen: TH: with voice we make they, their, there, they’re, and those.

Now listen again, TH: without voice we make thick, thin, thunder, through


Sufficient information, you say!

That’s fine. I know I’m a bit talkative.

But how many words within this little poem am I, your humble servant T, not in!

Count, I dare you to!


  • Submitted in response to Poetry Prompt #2


Vivienne says: I love poetry and am particularly concerned that we can get kids interested both in reading it, and then, later, writing it.

I also have an interest in English orthography: boring to many others, but not me. Hence my contribution.






Poem of the Day


T for Tree

by Virginia Lowe


Straight trunk

Typical tree

Outstretched arms

Thick canopy

Leaves trap the sun

brilliant green

Dark brown trunk

A child’s drawing


Burnished silver

Polished gum

Dead, but shining

in the morning sun

Froth of regrowth

at its roots

Towers a silver

toasting fork

Branches curve tortuous

weaving and gliding

starting way up

the tall straight trunk

the architecture

fully exposed.


Architecture exposed,

even living.

Dull eucalypt green

Narrow leaves

loosely bunched

hang down to escape

the sun’s rays

Trunk bright pink-gold

Burnished by

morning sun


Huge animals

that hopped

Egg-laying mammals

with duck bills

The first Europeans

couldn’t believe

their own eyes

Painted what

they longed to see

Dark trunk

outstretched branches

thick canopy

typical (Northern) tree

starting with T.


  • Submitted in response to Poetry Prompt #2


Virginia says: I spent the first weeks of January in the mountains, Falls Creek (about 40 friends took over a ski lodge). Falls Creek was in the middle of a bushfire about 12 years ago, and is surrounded by bleached white dead trees – sad, but beautiful – and regrowing. I had several phrases in my mind, and the letter T sparked off contemplation about the comparison between Northern and Southern Hemisphere trees, and reactions to them.  It is my usual blank verse, short lines, with some half rhymes thrown in.



Poem of the Day


School holidays

by Myra King


Get outside and play you kids,

my mother said one day,

go climb a tree, or fly a kite,

just get outside and play.


But the tree is small,

the kite is broke,

it’s been raining here all day.

We have to stay inside today,

it’s far too wet to play.


We’ll have a look, the oldest said,

and find a middle ground.

We’ll channel surf the TV now

and see what can be found.


A show on rocks and mountain tops,

fresh air, and stuff like that

and here is one of flies in flight

and how to clip a cat.


Us younger ones are crying out

how boring are all those!

The oldest one just winks at Mum

and gets out raincoat clothes.


Myra says: Thinking about kids on school holidays and Mum wanting some peace and quiet. My sister was 10 years older than me and wise beyond her years.