7. What did the astronauts eat and drink whilst travelling on their journey to the Moon and back?
Once Upon a Time by J.R.Poulter
Once upon a long ago
In the distant mists of time
There was a prince who had to make
A poesy all in rhyme.
He had to weave a wondrous tale
For his intended bride,
That swept the legends of the land
The myths from far and wide
Into one vast saga,
A tome to end all tomes!
He set out to collect the tales,
It took him far from home.
The prince crossed many deserts,
He climbed too many hills,
He walked through sun and snow and sleet.
He suffered many ills!
At last, he had his great big book!
At last, he’d wed his bride!
But as he neared the castle,
He heard a mournful sigh…
What stood there was a ruin,
Wind moaned through empty halls.
Of all the pomp and pageantry,
Nothing was left at all…
Amidst a drape of spider webs
Within the central court,
He found a tomb whose statuary
Had been most marvelous wrought.
There was his bride, robed as a queen,
Her king was by her side.
A scroll lay open on her lap
Of fictions, fables, lies…
The prince stood still,
As turned to stone.
The ancient beams
Above him groaned.
A crack, a scream,
He was no more.
The Tome of Tales
Lay on the floor.
The wind tore at the pages,
Tossing them far away.
All that was left, the marble tomb
And what it had to say,
“Once upon a time…”
[in “Myths & Legends” a Prints Charming Anthology edited by Sally Odgers]
“Once Upon a Time” is a narrative verse fantasy in loosely rhyming quatrains.
The story is framed around the idea of a ‘trial of love’ whereby a suitor is set a difficult task, which he has to perform in order to win the lady he loves.
Difficult to impossible tasks are seen in other fairy tales. Rumplestiltskin and Cinderella are examples. Greek legends also contain this sort of plot device as with the trials of Hercules and the legend of Perseus and Medusa.
Activity: Write a story or draw a wall frieze in sections about a hero who is set an impossible task and how he achieves it.
Discussion: It is said a challenge is good for you, it develops your thinking processes and your problem solving skills. True or false? Give reasons.
Activity: List examples of ‘challenges’ you meet in everyday life.
Discussion: Homework and chores – institutionalized cruelty, child labour are necessary for maturation/character building, learning responsibility and ‘earning’ our way.
Teacher Notes and Activities by J.R.Poulter
The Seasons have been the inspiration for many poets over the years.
The earliest that I know of, is the beautiful passage of poetry in the Book of Ecclesiastes, Chapter 3, verses 1 to 8, that begins –
“To everything there is a season,”
This passage, in its turn, inspired the song “Turn! Turn! Turn!” sung by The Seekers in 1964, The Byrds in 1965, Mary Hopkin in 1968 and, most recently, by Bruce Springsteen in 2008. The song, which is poetry set to music, was written by Pete Seeger in the late 1950s.
Activity: Find at least two other modern songs that speak about the seasons.
Spring and Summer generally evoke joyous poems that celebrate the coming of new life.
Autumn and Winter generally evoke feelings of loss, sorrow, longing…
Activity: Find a poem for each season that reflects the more traditional feelings associated with that season.
Activity: Write a short poem, a quatrain or a haiku, that reflects the opposite of the traditional view of each season. For example, spring might be sneezin’ season, summer might be ‘all hot’n bother,’ autumn could be a celebration of its fiery colours, winter could be all about enjoying winter sports.
“Spring Thing” talks about the end of Winter and the beginning of Spring.
How do you know this?
Activity: List at least two phrases or lines that suggest Winter and another two phrases or lines that suggest Spring.
Activity: Find examples of the following poetic devices in the poem, “Spring Thing.”
Lost Generation by J.R.Poulter, image by Dandi Palmer
The men fought and died for Australia in World War I, are often referred to as the ‘lost generation.’
Australian was a young country and we needed our manpower to build our nation. However, when World War I broke out, everyone in Australia felt strongly it was their patriotic duty to do whatever they could to aid the war effort, including going to fight overseas in a strange country, in appalling conditions.
A great many men died, women too. The dimension of the loss of life was greatly out of proportion to the size of the Australian population at that time. SO many died that there was hardly a family in Australia who had not lost at least one family member to war.
Write a story or poem about someone in your family history who fought in a devastating war.
Illustrate it with a picture of them you have drawn or a copy of a photograph of them.
Do a rubbing of their medals and share with the class what the medals were for.
Think about the lines –
They fought and died – and who’s to blame?
The earth treats friend and foe the same.
And, at the end of the poem –
The scene has changed; the sky’s still blue…
Write them in your own words, explaining what you think they mean.
Why do you think the poet used the words ‘ghost grey’ in the line –
In ghost grey light, they went to war.
The War Memorial in each capital city, has a great many images depicting the various wars Australians were called on to fight in and photos of many who fought in those wars, old diaries the men wrote in the trenches, letters they wrote to loved ones and much, much more.
Try to visit the war memorial in your capital city or the war memorial statues and plaques in your own town or suburb. Write a short story or poem about anything that especially inspired you on your visit.