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.






5 thoughts on “Poem of the Day

  1. Dear T.What an interesting interview!I consider you and your associates constantly
    when writing poetry…Even implied sounds can make a world of difference.Thank you for your help and best wishes to you and Vivienne.Anne

  2. This is such a fun poem, Vivienne, and I love how you’ve set a challenge right at the end. Bill and I are both keen Scrabble players, sometimes competing in tournaments, so you can see how keen I am to share your beaut poem with others. x

    • I guess that’s you, Di. I am not a poet, but sometimes I try. I am trying to complete a book for teachers on what they need to know about English orthography, so this challenge appealed to me. I have loved Bill’s poetry since That Smell is My Brother, and also love the novels of both of you, and your poetic posts, Di. I despair about much within the English ‘curriculum’ (real and hidden) and am overly nostalgic for the 70s, 80s and some of the 90s. Love of language and curiosity about our wonderfully rich language heritage are my crusade. I play scrabble, badly, but enjoy it. Thank you for the encouragement. x x

  3. The alfabets are defective. So many sounds are missing, and others are duplicated. No one has woken up to the fact that, in English, the vowels are more than AEIOU and Y.
    People don’t know how to define sounds, Pity.

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