Children’s poetry can enthral an audience just as readily as a picture book. Recently I taught and read poetry across an R-7 school and the teachers were amazed that the children enjoyed poetry. It made the children laugh. It made them look at the world in a different way. And they could write some sensational lines also.
Here’s one of my poems for young children- best not read just before lunch though:
Ice cream city
Ice cream city
melted into marshmallow cloud
and the train runs
along licorice tracks
holding jelly baby people
in toffee coloured carriages.
They wave fairy floss flags
and wish they could ski
across the vanilla
roofs and pavements
of the ice cream city.
© Lorraine Marwood
A poem can also pose a problem- like what does a cow use when it gets an itch…
creeps into hard to get places
like a backbone when a cow
has no scratchy fingers,
so the bark of a tree
the splinters of a post
the prickly points of a wire fence
the dry crinkly grass
all make substitute
© Lorraine Marwood from ‘that downhill yelling’ Five Islands Press
I’ve just completed a May Gibbs children’s Literature Fellowship and part of my work was completing a poetry collection due to come out in August with Walker. As I kept and still keep notebooks over the years of snatched lines, the bare bones of an incident; I was able to trawl, tweak, rewrite and create new poems. And garner audience feedback too.
‘What is poetry?’ I often ask a group of children.
‘It’s like a nursery rhyme, like a song,’ a child eventually answers. And yes poetry keeps us dancing through an ordinary day, by celebrating the extraordinary in the world around us.
Congratulations Sally on the publication of Toppling- I am so looking forward to reading it.
Lorraine Marwood. http://www.lorrainemarwood.com/
Thanks so much for dropping by Lorraine, and for sharing your beautiful poems.