The Dirigible Balloon
Poetry for Children

Australia in September

Listen to Carole ...
People travel miles to gaze
at tulips, wear shoes and socks in case
the snakes might be awake,
wear helmets with eyes when out on bikes
to ward off ferocious magpies,
drive carefully to avoid kangaroos,
lizards, wombats, koala bears, cockatoos.
Nobody minds the huntsman spider;
it's the redback they fear. To an outsider
both arachnids look the same,
telling them apart's a losing game.
I point out a sleeping possum in the shed;
my Aussie cousin's not interested;
and only I can see the charm
of the rainbow lorikeet on my arm
while ants the size of mice
colonise the deck. Here's my advice,
if you prefer your critters in a zoo
I wouldn't come here if I were you.

About the Writer

Carole Bromley

Carole was born in Middlesbrough in the UK and lives in York. She has had pamphlets and collections published and has also won a number of competitions, including the Bridport, the Yorkshire Open, Torbay, Poetry Space and the Bronte Society Literary Prize. Her poems for children have been published in The Caterpillar, in her collection, Blast Off! and in anthologies from MacMillan and Emma Press. She was the winner of the 2022 Caterpillar Prize. Carole will be tutoring a course on writing poems for children at the Garsdale Retreat in October 2024