Be brave because . . .
Be brave because boldness . . .
Be brave because boldness brings . . .
Be brave because boldness brings benefits.
Be brave because boldness brings bigger benefits!
Hi everyone, here’s a visual prompt for you this week. What does Spring suggest to you? Think yourself back to childhood and let your imagination roam freely. I’m really looking forward to seeing what wonderful poems you come up with … it’s always exciting to check my in box and read the latest submissions. A big thank you to everyone who’s been submitting regularly. Your support for this site is much appreciated. Please keep your contributions coming in. Don’t forget, if you’ve missed a prompt you can always catch up. Send poems to me at email@example.com as a Word or Text file attachment and add a few lines about your writing process.
I caught a piece of yesterday
to share with you today.
It’s clinging to a memory
of how we laugh and play.
I know that piece of yesterday
will never go astray.
It’s squashed inside a heavy book.
That’s where it’s going to stay.
Tomorrow, when I’m old and grey
I’ll still remember yesterday
and how we used to play and laugh.
Because … I have our photograph!
Celia said: Personal pictures and photos have an almost magical connection with our memories and emotions. And some become more precious as the Yesterdays slip by! Do you treasure your analogue or digital album of Yesterdays?
Yesterday we had bacon and eggs for breakfast
Today was Coco Pops
Yesterday we had an apple for morning tea
Today was fairy floss
Yesterday we had pumpkin soup for lunch
Today was hot chips
Yesterday we had Greek yogurt for an afternoon snack
Today was a Mars Bar
Yesterday we had a roast chicken dinner with veggies
Today was a Happy Meal from McDonald’s
Yesterday we had homemade apple pie for dessert
Today was a chocolate donut
Yesterday we watched the footy with carrot sticks and dip
Today we watched with a big bucket of popcorn
Yesterday my mum was home all day
Today my dad was in charge of food
I wonder what we will eat tomorrow?
Monty Edwards is a regular contributor to the Australian Children’s Poetry Poem of the Day and rarely misses responding to the Monday Poetry Prompt. Monty is retired pastor and educator, whose main focus in writing has become rhyming verse. This began in early adulthood with light-hearted poems to be shared at family celebrations, then years later, in occasional contributions to the weekly bulletin of the church where he served. These were collected and published as Poems on the Way in 2015.
Since that time he has become a regular contributor to the Australian Children’s Poetry Poem of the Day feature and to date has had nine poems accepted for publication by The School Magazine.
With wife Sheena, Monty lives in beachside Rockingham, south of Perth, WA. They have three adult children and five grandchildren. Monty’s other interests include tennis, chess, playing piano and cryptic crosswords.
Monty has published a collection of his children’s poems called The Mystery Box, which includes a number of his Australian Children’s Poetry Poem of the Day submissions.
Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org
When did your interest in poetry begin?
I was exposed to poetry in my school years and mostly enjoyed it for its entertainment value, especially rhyming verse that featured narrative, or humour, or both.
Did you write poetry as a child?
I don’t remember writing any poetry until my late teens and very little in early adulthood.
When was your first poem published?
As a by-product of my work as a pastor, and perhaps as late as 1995, I occasionally began to produce verse with Christian themes for the weekly bulletin of the church where I served, then subsequently for the church I now attend in my retirement. In September 2015, 27 of these poems were self-published in booklet form as Poems on the Way: Christian Verse for the Curious and the Committed.
Who are some poets whose writing you love?
I am drawn to particular poems rather than to particular poets and because of other lifetime interests, have not read widely in the genre until recently. Of Australian poets, I have spent most time with Banjo Paterson and CJ Dennis and I have particularly admired the poems of Jenny Erlanger and Pat Simmons on the Australian Children’s Poetry website.
Have you had any poetry writing mentors?
None to date.
What inspires you to write poetry?
In general, I write to make a difference, whether that be to the reader’s mood, their attitudes, point of view or belief system. I use poetry to affirm, encourage, entertain, educate and challenge, depending on the occasion and likely reader or hearer.
When you are writing a poem, what comes first – a subject, a line, a word?
For me, the subject would nearly always be the starting point, unless I am responding to a prompt.
Do you workshop your poems with anyone?
No, but if I think something I’ve written may be misunderstood, give offence, or fail to achieve its intended purpose, I value my wife’s assessment of its likely effect.
How do you know when a poem is finished?
When I can no longer find ways to improve it! However, I find that if you let the poem rest for a day or two, you may find you can improve it after all.
How do you know if a poem is good?
Although there is no substitute for honest feedback from readers, I feel one’s personal instinct for a poem’s worth develops with experience and by reading respected poets.
In practice I would ask myself: Does the poem flow? If rhyming, is the rhyme unforced? Is each element of the poem appropriate for the intended reader? (In that regard consider subject matter, vocabulary, imagery, form, and length). Is the content interesting and the conclusion satisfying? If I can answer those questions positively I gain confidence in my poem’s worth.
What is your top tip for aspiring children’s poets?
Keep asking yourself questions like those in the previous response as you work on your poem, and run through them again when you believe it is finished.
A snail once heard the story
Which is very often told:
“If you reach a rainbow’s ending,
You will find a pot of gold!”
This idea was most appealing,
(Since the snail was very poor)
And it left him with a feeling
That he couldn’t quite ignore.
Every day when it was raining,
But the clouds began to clear,
He would scan the sky for rainbows
In the hope one would appear.
Then at last he thought he saw one
In the garden hothouse glass!
To the spot he slowly hurried
Streaking silver through the grass.
But oh, what disappointment,
When he reached that special place!
For of golden coins or treasure,
He discovered not a trace.
As he turned to leave, discouraged,
Something caught his tearful eye
And a potted gold chrysanthemum
Proved the story was no lie.
My lunch for school’s a mystery box and here’s the reason why:
I cannot guess just what’s inside, however hard I try.
There’s something different every day: Mum treats it as a game.
The only thing I’m sure about: no day will be the same.
If Monday’s roll has vegemite, then Tuesday’s might have jam.
A sandwich made for Wednesday’s lunch might well be beef or ham.
On Thursday then, a salad wrap could be the big surprise,
But one school lunch on Friday something shocking met my eyes:
My mystery box was oozing with a greenish-yellow trickle!
There must have been a mix-up with Dad’s favourite: cheese and pickle!
While Dad enjoyed my peanut paste spread on his bread with honey,
My sandwich had an awful taste. Don’t laugh. It wasn’t funny!
Laughing in your trees;
No jumbuck jollier,
Gladly I’d follow yu’,
Life was meant to please.
Can you whistle?
Oh but this’ll
Do, for laughter’s sweet
And you could,
If you but stood
Your terribly ticklish feet.
Tiring is this
But you need to fly;
For ticklish feet
Sure has you beat,
But what a way to die!
A sleepwalker named Alexander
Left his bed so he could meander.
Eyes closed and snoring,
Arms out before him,
He ended up on the verandah.
But fate had in store a cruel twist
For this poor lonely somnambulist.
The next thing he knew
There was doggy-doo,
And his feet landed right in its midst!
So in future, my friend Alexander,
Take heed of a humble bystander:
Please stay in your bed,
Sheets over your head,
And don’t try to sleep’ly meander.
Butcher Bob from Iron Knob was known throughout the land
for cooking food that tasted good, with produce fresh at hand
Now, Bob he strove to get his stove to turn out something new
He’d not prepare the common fare the common townsfolk knew
From out the back was heard a quack, a gobble and some clucking
a chop or three, then glory be, a mess of feather plucking
It seemed absurd, he stuffed each bird into its larger cousin
and finally, he sang with glee as he shoved it in the oven.
With carving knife, he and his wife had settled down to tuck in
to Sunday treat, this three-way meat, he invented roast turducken
‘Next week, my dear, my next idea…the roast I will be making…
roast beef, pig too, and kangaroo…my kanga-beefy-bacon.’