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Monday 28 November 2022

After I’d finished

                                I left the poem

on a bench in a park. I waited until

no one was looking, then put it down,

got up nonchalantly and walked away.

At a safe distance I kept watch to see

if anyone would pick it up. No one did.

After a while I turned on my heel,

deciding that this particular child’s future

would be best left to my imagination.

I like to think a bereaved mother scooped

him up and put him on a mantelpiece,

or filed him away for safekeeping.

And I like to think he brought a smile,

or at the very least was used as a tissue

to wipe away a tear.

Saturday 26 November 2022


I’m catting around

Just catting around 

Might sleep through day

On a soft settee 

Have a stretch, have a yawn

Lick my bum, scratch a flea

Might stare at a bird 

Might lunge at a mouse

Might drink from the sink

As I slink round the house

Cos I’m catting around

Yeah catting around

I’ll climb on your head

When you’re trying to sleep 

I’ll lounge on your bed

In a furry heap

Might sit on your book

Get hair on the couch 

Might act like a clown

Might sulk like a grouch

Cos I’m catting around 

Just catting around

See I’m a good little kitty 

When I wanna be nice

But I have a few words

So I’ll be precise:

Might bat your face

Might sit on your chest –  

It’s my place now

So be a good guest

While I’m catting around

Yeah while I’m catting around

Sunday 20 November 2022

It's the end of the world

and I’m off to make some children

laugh. Maybe not laugh, but smile.

And maybe not the end of the world

right now, but soon enough.

The children won’t know it when

it gets here, so it’s my job to make sure

the last impression in their tiny

minds is a happy one. Everyone

has a different job: some are tasked

with analysing the end of the world,

others with trying to stop it, and

there may even be one or two lucky

souls to sift through the mess. But before

that, the children need laughter.

And it’s my job to don the flak jacket

and red-nose and give them what,

in this scheme of things, they don’t

even know they need. We need.

Joshua Seigal 

Wednesday 16 November 2022


I had the pleasure yesterday of working with the fantastic Year 5 children at Thomas Buxton Primary School, London. I am really delighted to share the following poem, which came out of one of the workshops. We focused on using personificiation to describe emotions. The thing that stood out to me about the following poem was the adept use of rhyme. During workshops I normally discourage rhyming, as it can get in the way of what pupils want to say; the poem below is a nice exception to this rule!

ANGER by Zafir, Year 5

I am the emotion of rude hitting

I am the feeling of grandma messing up her knitting 

I am the stench of expired milk 

I am the feeling of ruining expensive silk 

I am a lion in a cage

I am full of rage 

I am fire, smoke and lava

I am the disappointment of my father 

I am like prowling wolves and tigers 

I am like a pack of wild hyenas 

I am thunder and lightning 

I am very frightening


Wednesday 9 November 2022


Hancock’s in the jungle. 

The lions gather round.

They’ll soon be pouncing hungrily

and chaos will abound. 

Hancock’s in the jungle,

with maggots for his tea.

He’ll sleep in leaves and mud

and defecate beneath a tree. 

Hancock’s in the jungle.

It’s really getting wild.

With bats and bugs and centipedes

let’s prey he gets defiled.

Hancock’s in the jungle,

and things are getting grimy

but compared to Matty H

there’s nothing else that’s quite as slimy.   

Yes Hancock’s in the jungle,

with spiders on his skin. 

Let’s hope that he gets messed up

like the mess he left us in.

[Secretary of State for Covid Incompetence, Matt Hancock, Joins reality TV Show]

Tuesday 8 November 2022


Love is a leap,

always a leap – 

no cord, no net

and no knowing how

you’ll hit the ground.

Your bones protest

it’ll hurt like hell

but hell – 

the view from the ledge

looks inviting.

Sunday 6 November 2022


When he was alive he sold paint, so I guess

it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that paint

was what we found in the cupboards. Sure,

there was a broken clock, some dusty ornaments

and one or two old photos, but mainly there was paint.

Tins of old paint. Neither me nor my grandmother

knew what to do with them, or how long they had

been there. She said she’d give them to the decorator,

see if he could make use of them. I took them down

one by one, drawing a blank where a world used to be.

Thursday 3 November 2022


[unfunny man James Corden accused of joke plagiarism 02/11/22]