Boxing Day

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Boxing Day

It’s the day to
be a contender
and go the distance

It’s the day to
face the foe
toe to toe

It’s the day to
bob and weave
and float like a butterfly

It’s the day to
ensure
you don’t have a glass jaw

It’s the day to
roll with the punches
and not be out for the count

It’s not the day to
howl
and throw in the towel

Apple Thoughts on Apple Day

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Image credit: Apple Gala Golden Delicious Jonathon Orchard CC-BY Jackson’s Orchard https://flic.kr/p/s6RjYb

As it’s Apple Day, I’ve had apples on my mind. Apple Day (21 October every year) was launched by Common Ground in 1990 to celebrate the wide variety of apples and to contemplate the risks of losing the diversity of this wonderful fruit. Apples feature richly in our culture from the temptation of Eve in the Garden of Eden to the temptation to buy the latest smartphone. These are my thoughts in poetry form.

Apple Thoughts On Apple Day

(i)
Lots of people
love apples.

We’re tempted by the shiny skin
and the lively taste
that lies within.

And we adore the humble apple
in crumbles
and in pies.

(ii)
When I see an innocent apple
hanging from a tree
I make a wish that no mishap’ll
befall him.

(iii)
In my day,
when young people
wanted to experiment with alcohol
they opted for cider.

Do they still?

As a teenage kid
I never did.
I preferred beer.

(iv)
I’m picturing a billionaire businessman
in a shiny green appleskin suit
sitting behind a desk
in the Big Apple,
apple juice running down his chin
as he bites into a big red one.

(v)
The Beatles christened
their company and record label Apple.
I remember ‘Hey Jude’
revolving on the turntable
and watching the Apple logo
go round and round.

Tasty song.

(vi)
Apple Day,
by the way,
is nothing to do with computers.

(vii)
I guess
some people
whose livelihood/ business
is apples

are obsessed
with them?

(viii)
Is it bonkers
to be bananas
about apples?

A Message from two children for National Poetry Day

Poem from Bernard Young visit to a school on National Poetry Day

We had a great time writing messages poems for National Poetry Day at St Paul’s Primary in Worsley today. Well done everyone and keep it up! Here is an example from Amy and Hadley.

Dear Mr Poet
I’m out of ideas,
And don’t I know it,
If I don’t get started,
I’ll be here all night,
And that’s just not right!

Dear Mr Poet
Thanks for the lesson,
To you I owe it,
My ideas were great,
I picked up a pen,
And I wrote it down,
Miss gave it a ten!

Dear Mr Poet
Thanks again

Another Message Poem for National Poetry Day on 6 October

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National Poetry Day takes place the first Thursday in October every year in the UK. Each year there is a theme and this year it is MESSAGES. Here is another poem of mine on that theme to give you some inspiration.

Message From A Miserable Tortoise

To whom it may concern,

Don’t expect
to see me today.

I’m fed up.
Depressed.
Withdrawn.

You can knock as hard as you like.
I’m not coming out.
Not even for a lettuce leaf.

I’m a hard nut to crack.
An unsociable bone.

Leave me alone.

I’m already booked for the actual day of National Poetry Day, but still have some slots that week, if you want to have me come to your school to kick off the creativity, or any other time of year is good too. Just contact me for availability and price.

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A Reassuring Message – Free Teaching Resources for National Poetry Day

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I hope all the teachers out there are having a lovely time still on holiday, sipping ice cold drinks, basking in the sunshine. But for those already thinking about returning back to school and lesson planning, there are some FREE LESSON PLANS and other resources for National Poetry Day on the NPD website.

Maybe a competition will provide some motivation. Here are some to look into:

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National Poetry Day takes place the first Thursday in October every year in the UK. Each year there is a theme and this year it is MESSAGES. Here is a poem of mine on that theme to give you some inspiration.

A Reassuring Message

Anything that’s broken
I will mend

Anything that needs to go
I will send

Anytime you call me
I shall attend

You can ask me anything
I am your friend

I’m already booked for the actual day of National Poetry Day, but still have some slots that week, if you want to have me come to your school to kick off the creativity, or any other time of year is good too. Just contact me for availability and price.

National Poetry Day is the first Thursday in October. Book a Poet www.bernardyoung.co.uk

Messages for National Poetry Day on Thursday 6th October

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National Poetry Day takes place the first Thursday in October every year in the UK. Each year there is a theme and this year it is MESSAGES. Here is a poem of mine on that theme to give you some inspiration.

To The Great Provider

Dear Great Provider,
This is to thank you
for the delicious cheese
you so thoughtfully provide.
Thank you.

However,
(and I do hope this doesn’t seem ungrateful)
would it be possible to place it
by the side of our hole
and not on the spikes
of the thing that snaps
when we take a bite?
That would be most helpful.

It’s just that,
as you may or may not know,
a member of my family
(my precious daughter to be precise)
has not returned from dining out
and we fear her disappearance
may have something to do
with the fierce snappy thing.
It doesn’t like mice!
(This is not a criticism.
We would sooner pull out our own whiskers
than question your unquestionable wisdom.
We know you move in mysterious ways.)

Once again, Great Provider,
thank you for the wonderful cheese.
It’s irresistible.

Yours humbly and appreciatively,
Montague Mouse

This poem appears in my book Wanted Alive, copies are available to buy from this site. More information about National Poetry Day is available on the Forward Arts Foundation website.

Illustration by Jessie Gillick from Wanted Alive

Illustration by Jessie Gillick from Wanted Alive

A busy week for World Book Day 2016

Poem by nursury school class

It’s a busy time for a poet this time of year, and for schools, what with dressing up and doing lots of reading and great creative writing.

The poem in the photo (inspired by my I Like What I Like – see video below) was written with Nursery Children at Audenshaw Primary School, Manchester as a class effort. We performed it at the end of the day to the rest of the school. I was there to celebrate World Book Day 2016 and worked with every age group. A wide variety of excellent poems were written and performed. I had a great time, so thanks to all the staff and pupils for working so hard and for making me very welcome.

In all I visited seven schools just before and during World Book Day Week. Thank you to Abingdon Primary School (Stockport),  Gorton Mount Primary Academy (Manchester) who have a fantastic steel band who played for me, Old Hall Drive Primary Academy (Manchester), Alexandra Park Primary (Stockport), Broadfield Primary (Oldham), and (last but not least) Silverdale Primary Academy (Newcastle-under-Lyme).

Thanks also to Authors Aloud who organised a couple of the bookings.

I like playing in the park
I like tig and hide and seek
I like swimming and paddling
I like what I like I do

I like ice cream and Mexico
I like Sealife and Lego
Let’s say hello to our Leo
We like what we like we do

I like flowers and rainbows
I like hopscotch and videos
I like porridge it fills me up
I like what I like I do

Remembrance

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We comfort one another
We who never learn

The losses continue
The fires still burn

We comfort one another
We who never learn

The Lightsaber Kid

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The Lightsaber Kid

Open the lid
and out jumps
The Lightsaber Kid.

I want to call
the piece of tubing he uses
a Light Saver.

He calls it a Light Chamber.

He deflects bullets with it.

Exhausting!

I made a vid
of him in action.
He liked it.

OK kid,
I said,
get back in your box.

So he did

‘nt.

This poem previously appeared on PolaroidBlipfoto.

Light is the theme of National Poetry Day 8 October 2015

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A Light Verse

This hefty is a light verse
to substantial celebrate National Poetry Day.
I’ve massive included a few weighty words
cumbersome so that it doesn’t millstone float away.