The Dirigible Balloon
Poetry for Children

Learning To Fly

I’m learning to fly,
taking lessons from the birds,
watching landings and take offs,
stealing secrets from the gulls:
How to glide on currents of air,
how to lift and float and hover.

I’m learning from the swifts and the martins
how to feed while I’m in flight.
I’m learning from the jackdaws
that nest in our chimneys,
learning from the blackbirds,
their chat and communication.

I’m learning the physics and aerodynamics
I didn’t learn in school.
Learning migration from
long-distance travellers,
having navigational conversations
with wandering albatrosses.

I’m learning too, from the dragonflies,
the nimbleness needed to stay aloft,
from the bees and the butterflies -
I’m adding their skills
to my store of knowledge.

Till one day I’ll take off into the sky,
I’ll soar and I’ll dive, flutter and float.
No need for airlines or jumbo jets,
I’ll cross the seas all by myself,
like a boat in an ocean of cloud.

How great to see everyone stare,
to feel their envy, hear questions
tumbling from their lips,
knowing how easily I could slip away
and never return.

About the Writer

Brian Moses

Brian is an English poet who writes mainly for children. He has over 200 published works and has given over 3000 performances of his poetry and percussion show. His poetry books and anthologies for Macmillan have sold in excess of 1 million copies. He was asked by CBBC to write a poem for the Queen's 80th birthday and was invited by Prince Charles to speak at Prince’s Summer School for teachers at Cambridge University in 2007. Brian is Co-director of the Able Writers’ Scheme (now called the AIM High Writers' Scheme) which he founded in 2002. Brian can be contacted at