Tag Archives: Group poem

Happiness Is… ( a group poem, Heathbrook Independent Living Facility)

spending time with my grandchildren, Alex, Michael, Lewis and Amy
a good cup of tea with one sugar in my favourite mug
a tasty turkey salad and a nice pudding, out with my family
playing games and having fun with family and friends
pride in my family, to see all they have achieved
people telling stories, playing music and parties with friends
listening to Frank Sinatra and Gracie Fields on CDs
remembering my wife, Judith and knowing I am soon to be a great-granddad
singing along to Dreamboats and Petticoats
Happiness if treasured memories of happy times and loved ones.

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Filed under Charity Reading

At Smallwood school, Tooting.

A group poem written by year 5 & 6 pupils from London primary schools Smallwood and Beatrix Potter on 22 March 2012


The Incredible Monster Inside


In winter dark, I see a flickering light,

an old abandoned house with cobwebby windows.

I move towards the candle flame,

slowly opened the door in the cracked brickwork,

as floorboards creak, a monster emerges from the dark!


First I make out a green slimy face, withered eyes, a black tongue.

It roars a loud roar and spits phlegm. Its wide mouth

has massive yellow incisors. Its mouth is purple.

I see it has green legs, black feet, brown horns.


It smells of burning wood and disgusting dirt.

It’s rough to the touch as it pushes past me.

It eats ten humans a day or animals when people can’t be found.

It’s eating a cat now, chomping its bones and spitting out pink gloopy mucus.


The monster hasn’t noticed me, so I move on into the house.

Then I discover its nest, a stinking rotten mud-bath

surrounded by a moat of dirty water. Through a window

I see a flock of baby dragons. The mother feeds them and keeps them safe.


I hide. The monster returns to its nest and sleeps an evil sleep.

Suddenly to a sound of blasting music, pumping beats, the hero enters.

The hero chants: ‘Look into my eyes, just look at my eyes…’
The waking monster is hypnotized, under a spell. The hero from Ancient Greece

has another slave. The world is safe once more.


As I creep away, I see the baby dragons have all gone to sleep

curled around their mother, free to enjoy the abandoned house in peace.






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Filed under Able Writers, Children's Poetry, Education, Poets in schools

Group Poem: Christmas Is…

This poem was written by the audience at the Christmas Feast reading Jo Bell and I did in Northwich Library on 8th December.

Christmas Is…

Christmas is Yule in disguise, a shadow of festivities past.

Christmas is mince pies and mulled wine

pine needles embedded in carpet pile.

Christmas is endless games of Scrabble

and my grandmother buying up the best properties on Monopoly

(you have to speculate to accumulate)

Christmas is glorified gluttony.

Christmas is Dad appearing with port at regular intervals.

Christmas means getting together with family

and hooting with laughter at ‘Do you remember when?’

Carried on the festive tide, we visit times past, people past

and hear again those dear loved voices.

Christmas is ritualistic autocue revelry

with Elizabeth at 3.oopm on Christmas Day.

Christmas means trying to avoid the American commercial Christmas

and the cynical British Christmas. Perhaps

I can find a new Utopian, peaceful, multicultural  Christmas.

Christmas is Dickens, stories round the fire, singing round the piano.

One person who wrote a fabulous line, took it home to keep. She told me a week later she had written a poem, the first she had ever done since she was at school. I could add:

Christmas is when you unknowingly give the gift of poetry.


Filed under poetry, Writing challenges