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Celebrate National Poetry Day by sharing your favourite poems with us for a chance to win a signed copy of A Great Big Cuddle plus a limited edition signed print for your DC's bedroom wall

59 replies

UrsulaMumsnet · 05/10/2015 14:15

Thursday 8th October is National Poetry Day, so to celebrate we're asking you to tell us your favourite poem.

Children's Laureate Chris Riddell and former Children's Laureate Michael Rosen recently collaborated on a new book for young children. A Great Big Cuddle is an illustrated collection of poetry which celebrates all the best things about childhood. Share a line of poetry, the title, poet, or the whole piece (within reason - try to hold back on the epics!) for a chance to win a limited edition illustrated poem for your DC's bedroom, signed by Michael Rosen and Chris Riddell plus a signed copy of the book.

Find out more about Michael Rosen and Chris Riddell

This giveaway is sponsored by Walker

Celebrate National Poetry Day by sharing your favourite poems with us for a chance to win a signed copy of A Great Big Cuddle plus a limited edition signed print for your DC's bedroom wall
Celebrate National Poetry Day by sharing your favourite poems with us for a chance to win a signed copy of A Great Big Cuddle plus a limited edition signed print for your DC's bedroom wall
OP posts:
dinkystinky · 05/10/2015 14:18

To keep your marriage brimming
full of love in the loving cup,
whenever you're wrong, admit it,
whenever you're right, shut up!

By Ogden Nash.

Wise words to live and love by!

Enb76 · 05/10/2015 14:23

I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain—and back in rain.
I have outwalked the furthest city light.

I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.

I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry
Came over houses from another street,

But not to call me back or say good-bye;
And further still at an unearthly height,
One luminary clock against the sky

Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.
I have been one acquainted with the night.

Robert Frost

lucyanntrevelyan · 05/10/2015 14:25

The cleaning and scrubbing can wait till tomorrow
But children grow up as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down cobwebs; Dust go to sleep!
I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep

Campaspe · 05/10/2015 17:46

One of my most loved poems is "Death Be Not Proud" by John Donne. The message of triumph over death comforts me when I think of loved ones I have lost.

I'd also like to offer up a particular reading of it: Richard Burton (hope the link works). His voice sends shivers down my spine; it's that inflection in "why swell'st thou then" that seems to pluck at my heart strings.

Holy Sonnets: Death, be not proud
Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those whom thou think'st thou dost overthrow
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy pictures be,
Much pleasure; then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul's delivery.
Thou art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell,
And poppy or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke; why swell'st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally
And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.

barricade · 05/10/2015 18:01

Smile "Smile" Smile by Anonymous.

Smiling is infectious
You catch it like the flu
When someone smiled at me today
I started smiling too

I walked around the corner
And someone saw me grin
When he smiled I realised
I had passed it on to him

I thought about the smile
And then realised its worth
A single smile like mine
Could travel round the earth

So if you feel a smile begin
Don't leave it undetected
Start an epidemic
And get the world infected.


nannyt · 05/10/2015 18:01

I must go down to the sea again, it takes me back to my school days.

Janhans · 05/10/2015 18:02

micheal Rosen has alwys been my favourite childrens poet and after 21 years as an infant teacher and older children with special needs for 2 years and even now with my 3 young grand-daughters our all-time favourite poem (read with much feeling) is THE CHOCOLTE POEM from the book Quick Lets Get Out Of Here!!! A fantastic book!!

cathisherwood · 05/10/2015 18:05

there are fairies at the bottom of our garden - used to be read to me at bedtime

angie95 · 05/10/2015 18:07

My favorite poem is; From a Railway Carriage.
Faster than Faries,faster than witches,
Bridges and houses,hedges and ditches;
And charging along like troops in a battle,
All through the meadows the horses and cattle;
All of the sights of the hill and the plain,
Fly as thick as driving rain;
And ever again,in the wink of an eye;
Painted stations whistled by.

snowymum12 · 05/10/2015 18:13

It's got to be 'The Lion and Albert' by Mar riot Edgar. It starts...
There's a famous seaside place called Blackpool,
That's noted for fresh air and fun,
And Mr and Mrs Ramsbottom
Went there with Albert, their son.

It's over 100 years old and still makes me chuckle!

shadydelta · 05/10/2015 18:15

My daughters absolute favourite poem is the Ning Nang Nong by Spike Milligan it has her howling with laughter every time and myself also when she tries to repeat it to her little brother.
My own favourite is My Hearts In The Highlands by Robert Burns I always think of it if im on holiday and feeling a little homesick.

sjonlegs · 05/10/2015 18:16

I eat my peas with honey,
I've done it all my life,
It makes the peas taste funny,
But it keeps them on my knife!!

This was the first poem that I learnt off my heart.

It's cute and special and fun.

Amy0039 · 05/10/2015 18:18

I love Not Waving, But Drowning by (I think) Stevie Smith. It helped me process and vocalise my feelings when I fell ill with depression, which was the start of my recoverey.

hermancakedestroyer · 05/10/2015 18:48

The Crocodile by Roald Dahl

"No animal is half as vile
As Crocky–Wock, the crocodile.
On Saturdays he likes to crunch
Six juicy children for his lunch
And he especially enjoys
Just three of each, three girls, three boys.
He smears the boys (to make them hot)
With mustard from the mustard pot.
But mustard doesn't go with girls,
It tastes all wrong with plaits and curls.
With them, what goes extremely well
Is butterscotch and caramel.
It's such a super marvelous treat
When boys are hot and girls are sweet.
At least that's Crocky's point of view
He ought to know. He's had a few.
That's all for now. It's time for bed.
Lie down and rest your sleepy head.
Ssh. Listen. What is that I hear,
Galumphing softly up the stair?

Go lock the door and fetch my gun!
Go on child, hurry! Quickly run!
No stop! Stand back! He's coming in!
Oh, look, that greasy greenish skin!
The shining teeth, the greedy smile!
It's Crocky–Wock, the Crocodile!"

Love this poem

Calminacrisis · 05/10/2015 18:49

High Flight
It's a beautiful sonnet written by a young man during the Second World War. He scribbled it on the back of an envelope of one of the last letters he sent home. By the time it was received, he had been killed in action.

Oh I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds, and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air...
Up, up, the long, delirious burning blue
I've topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark or even eagle flew-
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high untresspassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

Wow, just gives me shivers!

Pigeonpea · 05/10/2015 18:50

She left the web, she left the loom
She made three paces thro' the room
She saw the water-flower bloom,
She saw the helmet and the plume,
She look'd down to Camelot.
Out flew the web and floated wide;
The mirror crack'd from side to side;
'The curse is come upon me,' cried
The Lady of Shalott.

We would recite this in drama class to demonstrate voice inflection

BestIsWest · 05/10/2015 18:51

“We who choose to surround ourselves
with lives even more temporary than our
own, live within a fragile circle;
easily and often breached.
Unable to accept its awful gaps,
we would still live no other way.
We cherish memory as the only
certain immortality, never fully
understanding the necessary plan.”

About the loss of a dog.

Pickofthepops · 05/10/2015 18:58


No breath of wind,
No gleam of sun –
Still the white snow
Whirls softly down
Twig and bough
And blade and thorn
All in an icy
Quiet, forlorn.
Whispering, rustling,
Through the air
On still and stone,
Roof, - everywhere,
It heaps its powdery
Crystal flakes,
Of every tree
A mountain makes;
‘Til pale and faint
At shut of day
Stoops from the West
One wint’ry ray,
And, feathered in fire
Where ghosts the moon,
A robin shrills
His lonely tune.

by Walter de la Mare

We love the way this poem conveys the sound of silence of snow, and the iciness and appeals to all the senses

peanutmum111 · 05/10/2015 19:10

As a food teacher who has heard all the excuses, this is brill :

My teacher ate my homework,
which I thought was rather odd.
He sniffed at it and smiled
with an approving sort of nod.

He took a little nibble --
it's unusual, but true --
then had a somewhat larger bite
and gave a thoughtful chew.

I think he must have liked it,
for he really went to town.
He gobbled it with gusto
and he wolfed the whole thing down.

He licked off all his fingers,
gave a burp and said, "You pass."
I guess that's how they grade you
when you're in a cooking class.

--Kenn Nesbitt

CordeliaScott · 05/10/2015 19:36

Talking in bed ought to be easiest,
Lying together there goes back so far,
An emblem of two people being honest.

Yet more and more time passes silently.
Outside, the wind's incomplete unrest
Builds and disperses clouds in the sky,

And dark towns heap up on the horizon.
None of this cares for us. Nothing shows why
At this unique distance from isolation

It becomes still more difficult to find
Words at once true and kind,
Or not untrue and not unkind.

Philip Larkin

This resonated with many of the awkward mistakes made in my twenties...

hanliying · 05/10/2015 19:44

We’ll Go No More A-Roving by Lord Byron, the most beautiful poem

Mindfulofmuddle · 05/10/2015 20:03

'This be the verse' by Philip Larkin.

I studied Larkin in 6th form, but this poem resonates with me much more now, than it did then.
I'm much less judgemental and have more empathy with my parents, since observing myself (unwittingly) pass on my faults to my kids...despite my best efforts to avoid doing so!

They f@% you up, your mum and dad. They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were f@
%ed up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another's throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don't have any kids yourself.

ScoutFinch1975 · 05/10/2015 20:04

The Warning

When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick flowers in other people's gardens
And learn to spit.

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

by Jenny Joseph

Constantsarechanging · 05/10/2015 20:41

“Doubt thou the stars are fire, Doubt that the sun doth move,. Doubt truth to be a liar,. But never doubt I love”


k8vincent · 05/10/2015 21:06

Robert Frost, Mending Wall. I love the fact that it speaks straight to our temptation to shut the door and keep everyone else out.

"Before I built a wall I’d ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offense.
Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That wants it down."

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