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Archive for the ‘Poems for Children’ Category

I saw a ship a-sailing,
A-sailing on the sea,
And oh! it was all laden
With pretty things for thee! 

There were comfits in the cabin,
And apples in the hold;
The sails were made of silk,
And the masts were made of gold. 

The four-and-twenty sailors
That stood between the decks
Were four-and-twenty white mice,
With chains about their necks. 

The captain was a duck,
With a packet on his back,
And when the ship began to move,
The captain said, “Quack! Quack!”

 

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“The sun was shining on the sea,
Shining with all his might:
He did his very best to make
The billows smooth and bright —
And this was odd, because it was
The middle of the night.

The moon was shining sulkily,
Because she thought the sun
Had got no business to be there
After the day was done —
“It’s very rude of him,” she said,
“To come and spoil the fun.”

The sea was wet as wet could be,
The sands were dry as dry.
You could not see a cloud, because
No cloud was in the sky:
No birds were flying overhead —
There were no birds to fly.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
Were walking close at hand;
They wept like anything to see
Such quantities of sand:
If this were only cleared away,’
They said, it would be grand!’

If seven maids with seven mops
Swept it for half a year,
Do you suppose,’ the Walrus said,
That they could get it clear?’
I doubt it,’ said the Carpenter,
And shed a bitter tear.

O Oysters, come and walk with us!’
The Walrus did beseech.
A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk,
Along the briny beach:
We cannot do with more than four,
To give a hand to each.’

The eldest Oyster looked at him,
But never a word he said:
The eldest Oyster winked his eye,
And shook his heavy head —
Meaning to say he did not choose
To leave the oyster-bed.

But four young Oysters hurried up,
All eager for the treat:
Their coats were brushed, their faces washed,
Their shoes were clean and neat —
And this was odd, because, you know,
They hadn’t any feet.

Four other Oysters followed them,
And yet another four;
And thick and fast they came at last,
And more, and more, and more —
All hopping through the frothy waves,
And scrambling to the shore.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
Walked on a mile or so,
And then they rested on a rock
Conveniently low:
And all the little Oysters stood
And waited in a row.

The time has come,’ the Walrus said,
To talk of many things:
Of shoes — and ships — and sealing-wax —
Of cabbages — and kings —
And why the sea is boiling hot —
And whether pigs have wings.’

But wait a bit,’ the Oysters cried,
Before we have our chat;
For some of us are out of breath,
And all of us are fat!’
No hurry!’ said the Carpenter.
They thanked him much for that.

A loaf of bread,’ the Walrus said,
Is what we chiefly need:
Pepper and vinegar besides
Are very good indeed —
Now if you’re ready, Oysters dear,
We can begin to feed.’

But not on us!’ the Oysters cried,
Turning a little blue.
After such kindness, that would be
A dismal thing to do!’
The night is fine,’ the Walrus said.
Do you admire the view?

It was so kind of you to come!
And you are very nice!’
The Carpenter said nothing but
Cut us another slice:
I wish you were not quite so deaf —
I’ve had to ask you twice!’

It seems a shame,’ the Walrus said,
To play them such a trick,
After we’ve brought them out so far,
And made them trot so quick!’
The Carpenter said nothing but
The butter’s spread too thick!’

I weep for you,’ the Walrus said:
I deeply sympathize.’
With sobs and tears he sorted out
Those of the largest size,
Holding his pocket-handkerchief
Before his streaming eyes.

O Oysters,’ said the Carpenter,
You’ve had a pleasant run!
Shall we be trotting home again?’
But answer came there none —
And this was scarcely odd, because
They’d eaten every one.”

 

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I went to the animal fair,
The birds and the beasts were there.
The big baboon, by the light of the moon,
Was combing his auburn hair.
The monkey, he got drunk,
And sat on the elephant’s trunk.
The elephant sneezed and fell on his knees,
And what became of the monk, the monk?

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(as told to a child)

As I went out, a Crow
In a low voice said, “Oh,
I was looking for you.
How do you do?
I just came to tell you
To tell Lesley (will you?)
That her little Bluebird
Wanted me to bring word
That the north wind last night
That made the stars bright
And made ice on the trough
Almost made him cough
His tail feathers off.
He just had to fly!
But he sent her Good-by,
And said to be good,
And wear her red hood,
And look for skunk tracks
In the snow with an ax –
And do everything!
And perhaps in the spring
He would come back and sing.”

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mbzsruw

When sheep are clouds and clouds are sheep
And one lies down at night,
What is it that he counts to sleep
In failing candlelight?

Does comfort come from clouds that walk,
Or woolly sheep that fly?
Methinks if clouds or sheep could talk
They’d tell us who and why.

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photo by Kevin Tuck at
http://www.rgbstock.com/photo/mBZsrUW/Sheep+like+the+clouds

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© Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2016.

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The grass is brown. Oh, Mother, why?
The rain won’t fall and so it’s dry.

The river’s slow. Oh, Mother, why?
The clouds are missing from the sky.

The deer are thin. Oh, Mother, why?
The grass is gone and some may die.

It’s dry! It’s dry! Oh, Mother, why?
We’re in a drought; for rain we cry.

Why is there drought, oh, Mother, why?
Without a rain, the weeks go by.

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2015.

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You’re Just A Tree

Out! Out to sea,
I’d love to go,
And thus I lean
To-ward my beau. 

But others cry,
“Out? Out to sea!
You cannot go;
You’re just a tree” 

And on my dream
Those others lean
And make it flat –
Not that they’re mean. 

The picture’s old;
One day a man
Came by and cut
Me with a plan. 

He took his time,
And worked with craft.
I’m not a tree;
I am a raft! 

Out! Out to sea!
No lean – I go!
And there I ride
Upon my beau.

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photo by Kevin Tuck at
http://www.rgbstock.com/photo/mQXSMPi/Lone+tree

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2014.

 

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The Colors Of A Drought

The color of a drought is brown:
   The green in grass is gone.
And cracks upon the dusty earth
   Open their mouths and yawn. 

The creeks and streams are narrower,
   With some completely dry.
And Robin sings a thirsty song,
   And Bambi gives a sigh. 

The color of a drought is blue;
   The sky has lost its white.
The clouds are few and far between
   Like left is far from right. 

And day by day, the sky is blue
   Like water used to be
When rivers ran like swift feet fly
   And gurgled happily. 

The brown and blue of drought can paint
   A drabness in the land,
And turn the joy of man and child
   To blues as dry as sand.


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link to other drought poems:
https://thebardonthehill.wordpress.com/2011/10/16/the-drought-poems-by-dennis-lange-2/

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photo by Kevin Tuck at http://www.rgbstock.com/photo/naGDvk0/Parched+ground

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2014.

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English: "The Jabberwock, with eyes of fl...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

              Jabberwocky

‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
   Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
   And the mome raths outgrabe. 

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
   The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
   The frumious Bandersnatch!” 

He took his vorpal sword in hand:
   Long time the manxome foe he sought –
So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
   And stood awhile in thought. 

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
   The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
   And burbled as it came! 

One, two!  One, two!  And through and through
   The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
   He went galumphing back. 

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
   Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day!  Callooh!  Callay!
   He chortled in his joy. 

‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
   Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
   And the mome raths outgrabe.

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            It Is A Villain, Nell

You may think, little girl, that it is swell,
But close exam the animal will flunk.
I’m telling you: it is a villain, Nell! 

Admiring its soft hair, one cannot tell.
Focus on the tail and you are sunk.
You may think, little girl, that it is swell. 

For it, you’ll get a special place in hell
In tomato juice: a bath, a dunk.
I’m telling you: it is a villain, Nell! 

Its black and white give off no warning bell;
Dear nose and eyes will make you tell me, “bunk!”
You may think, little girl, that it is swell. 

But when it hits you with that awful smell,
You’ll end in isolation like a monk.
I’m telling you: it is a villain, Nell! 

It has appealing points to sway, to sell;
So when you first encounter that cute skunk
You may think, little girl, that it is swell.
I’m telling you: it is a villain, Nell!

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2013.

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