This is my playground for poetry written for children with ideas and inspiration for writing your own poems. Come on in. Sit for a spell, have a cup of words to swirl around and make your own cup of poetry. I'm so glad you are here. I hope you'll find the Kingdom of Poetry a fun place to be.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Good to be Home

My Welsh Springer Spaniel
follows me from room to room
he circles like a cat
licks my ankles
bumps my thighs
he glares at me
waiting for a head scratch.

If I'd let him
he'd happily sit
in my lap.

He does not want
to let me go.
It takes a while
for him to do
his three turns,
and then plop belly down
to sleep on the rug
at my feet.

He shows me
he is happy
to have us all

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Over cities
and mountains
over plains
over rivers
to oceans
I'm flying
in an airplane.

    Today's challenge is to write a list poem about all the places you have traveled, or use your imagination and write about all the magic places you'd like to visit.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Find a seashell
hold it to your ear.
What do you hear?
The Sea?

When I hold a shell
what I hear
is a honky-tonk piano
in the key
of middle sea.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

At the Beach

Walking on the sand
what a good way
for the day
to begin--
watching the waves
rolling in.
This is the way
each day
should start
and end.

Monday, September 26, 2011


I like to eat peanuts,
roasted brown.
I crack the shell
and look what
I've found,
salty and tasty--
crunch, crunch
munch, munch
I'm a peanut
nutty hound.

Sunday, September 25, 2011


I thought I'd try that counting exercise again

A little chair
sat unpon the floor.
He turned around,
now there are
one,     two,     three,     four.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


One, two, three
gray dolphins
(counting, hold up three fingers)
glad to be alive,
(make swimming motions with arms)
deep in the ocean,
(bend over, hands stretching toward floor)
down they dive.

Three gray dolphins
(hold up three fingers)
swimming in the sea,
(make swimming motions)
up they jump,
(arms stretch high over head)
One, two, three.
(jump three times)

     Oh, I had fun writing this action rhyme.  So this is today's challenge.  Write your own action rhyme.  Close you eyes for a moment, when you open them write your rhyme about the first thing you see.  I actually tried this and here is what I came up with:

One television set
(hold up one finger)
feeling sad and blue.
(use a finger to outline a frown on your face)
He turned around
(turn around)
and then there were two.
(hold up two fingers)
(Or you could start with one child being the TV and have a second child join him.)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Palms in the Wind

in the wind
save us

Thursday, September 22, 2011


The clouds
look heavy
and sad.
The clouds
I think
they are
to cry.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


I have a special cookie.
It has its own surprise.

It is a fortune cookie,
The fortune rests inside.

     Have you ever made fortune cookies?  If you like writing haiku, it is fun to write them on small pieces of paper to slip inside the cookies.  Today's challenge is to write a fortune to put inside a cookie.
Your mother's smile shines
upon you all the day long--
sunshine happiness

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Sugar, Sugar,
Sugar Cookie!
You're the sweetest one.

Sugar, Sugar,
Sugar Cookie!
You are so much fun.

Count your fingers.
1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     9     10.

Count your toes.
10   9     8     7     6     5     4     3     2     1.

Count your sweet little nose.

Sugar, Sugar
Sugar Cookie!
You're the sweetest one.
(Tickle baby's tummy.)

     I thought I was done with cookie poems, but then two more came along to bite me.  They wouldn't let me go until I wrote them.  That is how poems are sometimes.  When my sister and I were young we used to count Whoops Willie on the tops of our fingers.  "Willie, Willie, Willie, Willie, whoops Willie, whoops Willie, Willie, Willie, Willie."  The whoops were that space between thumb and fore finger.  I have no idea where the game came from, but we did have fun doing it.  Like a tongue twister, we tried to say it over and over, faster and faster without twisting our tongues and messing up.  Today's poem is meant to be recited to a very young child.  Can you write your own counting poem?  Have a fun time.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Christmas Cookies

The cookies
I love the best
are one
my family makes,
the fattigmann
and krumkaka
at Christmas time
we bake.

     Does your family make Christmas cookies?  In my house we make Norwegian cookies, because my husband's mother and his grandmother did.  It is a family tradition we carry on.  Making the cookies takes lots of eggs and butter, and a lot of time.  But it is all worth it to have cookies to share with visitors during the holiday season.  I have a big red and white Farmer John lard tin that I store the cookies in.  The krumkaka is like a pancake that takes a special pan for making pretty designs on the horn shaped cookies.  The fattigmann also has a special cookie cutter to make diamonds with ruffly edges.  If you have special cookies for your holidays, perhaps you'd like to write a poem about it.  Enjoy.

© 2011, Joy Acey

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Graham Cracker

May I have milk,
to dip my
graham cracker?

When it drips 
on my chin
it's a real

     Have you ever looked closely at the holes and indentations in a graham cracker?  How many are there?
Are they all the same?  How are they different?  Why are there holes in a graham cracker?  If you could travel inside one of those holes, what do you think it would be like?  Who eats graham crackers?  What is your favorite kind of cracker?  Share your poem with me.  Have fun writing today.

© 2011, Joy Acey

Saturday, September 17, 2011


a snap

M U N C H,

                     M U N C H --


     I like how when I take a bite out of my gingersnap, what is left looks like a mouth that can snap up things like the old PACMAN characters snapped up energy pellets.  If you had a gingersnap, what would it snap up?  Would your gingersnap eat your Goldfish crackers?  Aren't I being silly?  But that is the fun of writing poetry.  Writing about cookies is something very young children can do because usually a cookie is a positive image for them.  Each cookie has a story that can become a poem.  Now, cookies are something to write a poem about.  Try it.

© 2011, Joy Acey

Friday, September 16, 2011

Oatmeal Cookies

oatmeal cookies
is very nice.
I love
the raisins
and the added spice.
With cinnamon,
and allspice too,
One is not enough.
Will you 
give me two?
will do.

     I'm still having fun with cookies, I hope you are too.  Cookies are exciting to write poems about because they all look different.  Some make wonderful sounds when you eat them.  Of course cookies have lovely smells and the taste and texture on your tongue is something to write poems about.  So pick your favorite cookie, eat one or two while you think of just the right words for your poem.  Enjoy.

© 2011, Joy Acey

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Oreo Cookies

Oreos, Oreos,
you know how it goes.

You twist them apart,
yes, that's the trick.
There's the frosting
to be

© 2011 Joy Acey

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies

What do you say 
about chocolate chips?
Don't you love 
those chocolatey bits?
They melt in your mouth,
they melt on your lips.
Who can pass up
those chocolate chips?

© 2011 Joy Acey

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Peanut Butter Cookies

I like eating
peanut butter cookies.
They really are so fine.
Their cross hatched markings
are made from a fork tine.
I love the feel
of those bits
upon my tongue,
eating peanut butter cookies
is yummy, yummy fun.
Even my dog,
he wants one.

© 2011 Joy Acey

Monday, September 12, 2011


I like cookies
     of every shape
          and kind.

From a box
     or batch,
          cookies blow my mind!

     I started playing with the idea of writing a list poem about all the different cookies I like, but then it got to be too long, so I thought I'd try to make this cookie week.  What is your favorite cookie?  Does your family have special cookies you make?  Can you write your own cookie poem? 

© 2011 Joy Acey

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Power Outage!

Last night we had
a huge storm
and now I am all forlorn.
the power is out
oh what can I do
to get this poem
posted for you?

After a long
powerless night
I awoke this morning
and still didn't have light.

So I'm off for cofee
and to think of my plight.

Here there is power,
in the brew of Starbucks.
They're the ones
who've improved my luck.
So I send this poem
using Starbuck electricity
and ask for forgiveness
for poem lameness and duplicity.

     The one thing I promised myself when I started this blog with the intent of posting a poem a day, was that I would give myself permission to write some bad poems along the way.  So today you're getting one of those not so great poems because I haven't had time to think poetry, I've been thinking basic survival.  Like, how long will my refrigerator last without power?  What is in there, anyway?  It seems like every time I turn around I'm starting to do something that requires power and I end up thinking I'm really stupid not to remember.  And since I live on a road with only 4 houses, I know we're going to be one of the last places to get power back. Last night as I was lying in bed reading by candle light I wondered if this was some terrorist plot, and how would I know.  How did you find out the Twin Towers had been bombed?
Hopefully by tomorrow everything will be back to normal.  Have a great Sunday. 
I will try to have time to think of a better poem for you for tomorrow.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Mr. Grasshopper

Mr. Grasshopper hopped,
                                 along his way.

He hopped,
         hopped by me
                  on my walk today.

He opened his wings

       And off he flew.

Good Bye, Mr. Grasshopper,

      And Good Bye to you.

      Did you meet someone today that you had to say good bye to?  Can you write your own poem about that?  Perhaps you'd like to try writing a Good Bye to Summer poem. 

Friday, September 9, 2011



Fredrick, a flea who was tiny but bold.
Awoke one morning with the world's worst cold.
His nose was drippy; his eyes were red!
He thought he'd spend the day in bed.

He wrapped a muffler round his scratchy throat.
Then he cuddled in his wooly-warm coat.
It wasn't an overcoat, or an anorak
But the spotted fur from my spaniel Mack.

As Fredrick snuggled,
he wiggled,
he twitched.
And all Mack could do—


was itch.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

I Want to Be

I want to be a silver back gorilla
so I can thump my fists
upon my chest.

I want to be an Italian gelato
so I can drip
upon your hand.

I want to work
in a French perfume factory
so I can smell the scents of spring.

I want to be a bottle nose dolphin
so I can swim and dive
in the ocean.

I want to be a goldfinch
so I can sing
a song for you.

I want to be a mirror
so I can show
you your smile.

But I can't,
so I guess I'll just have to be
happy to be me
and lucky to have you
for my friend.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


I wish I was a rainbow
to arc
across the sky.

I wish I was a rainbow
with my colors
flying high.

I wish I was a rainbow
offering hope
in a pot of gold.

I wish I was a rainbow
with Roy G. Biv colors
bright and bold.

I wish I was a rainbow
to shine
after misty rains.

I wish I was a rainbow
so folks would
point at me and shout
Look, a rainbow
has come out.

      If you could be anything what would you chose?  If you could pretend to be an animal, which one would it be?  Why?  Can you think of at least 4 reasons?  How many of your senses can you use in your reasons?  Now try writing your poem with the repeating line, "I wish I was...."

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Long Tailed Brush Lizard

For about an hour today
as the sun set
before dusk
I watched a lizard
climb rocks
in my yard.

He, no bigger than my pinkie
jumped from rock to rock.

Now he does push ups,
raises his belly
and I can see his throat
pump like a bellows.

He turns his head,
he eyes me,
lifts his tail
as if scenting the air.

He swings his tail
over the edge of the rock
like a yoyo string
catching and releasing
the rough surface.

I watch him
catch small black ants
skimming the rock.
His jaws move up and down.

Just as the cicadas
start their next round
of buzzing
he throws himself down
flat onto the sandstone
and pretends to be
an ancient fossil.

When the buzzing stops
he picks himself up
leaps to the next rock
and the next
and then out of sight.

Perhaps you think
I've wasted
a good evening hour
but I ask you,
how did you spend
your twilight hour?

Monday, September 5, 2011

Family Poem


Mama took me home to the Appalachians,
where her parents had a place near Valle Crucis,
off the road at Mast's General Store
up around the mountain.

I slept on a cot next to Mama.
In the middle of the night, I remember
waking to wander into the woods
walked until I found them at work.

Grandpappy sat in his ladderback rocker,
telling George when to add more wood to the fire.
I curled up in his lap and listened
to the quiet whoosh of owl wings

the piercing screech of a squirrel caught for dinner,
and the owl call -- Who cooks for you?
as he searched for a mate to share his meal.
I held my breath, waiting for her answer….

Grandpappy rocked in rhythm and told
stories about all my relations,
as the crystal liquid hissed and sizzled
dripping from the copper worm--

A cider moon grew large overhead,
shaking shadows from the trees.

In the morning, I'd wake on my little cot,
covered by a family quilt.
I'd look for proof of the night's reality
and find only warmth from kinfolk
guiding every step of my dirty feet.

I once had the pleasure of meeting the world famous storyteller Ray Hicks who lived in the mountains of North Carolina in a cabin without electricity.  He talked to me about the importance of saving family stories.  His life was certainly different from mine and so this poem is a combination of my memories and his life.  Can you write a poem about an incident in your family? 

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Weird Words!

Yo! Loco, loco,
the dog played the oboe!
The hippo dug deep in the lake.
The big old cat sighed
and shut her eyes
while the hummingbirds
stole birthday cakes.

     This poem is absolute nonsense.  It is what I ended up with when I tried writing a Poetry Obscura poem using Hey, Diddle, Diddle as the starting point.  Since the first line is nonsense words, I used reverse rhyming.  You could pick any musical instrument then make up a nonsense word to rhyme with it.  The nonsense word should have the same number of syllables as the musical instrument.  Can you make your own list on musical instruments and nonsense words that rhyme?  For instance:
Trumpet=blumpet, blumpet
violin=gungadin, gungadin
cymbal=thimble, thimble
piano= me and yo, me and yo
   Try this and see what you can come up with.  Go crazy. Be bold.  But what ever you do, have fun. 

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Father Mole's Bed

Young Father Mole
dug deep in his hole

so he could sleep
way down below
in his earthly bungalow.

Father Mole had no bed
he used a dirt pillow
for his head.
He'd snuggle there
and with his 26 children
standing guard
keeping warm 
wasn't hard.

He had only daughters
there were no sons,
some girls were pretty
some just handsome.

Off to the market
the girls went
one day
to buy Dad a bed,
but on their way
they met a peddler
with beds in a stack
so they bought
a green bed
and took it back.

"Thanks," said Father Mole
as he put down his head.
He slept and snored
all day 
in his bed.

         I hope you have a good Labor Day weekend.  And may the bed you lie your head upon provide a great rest.  This poem started from the Mother Goose nursery rhyme.  Perhaps you can try writing your own nursery rhyme.  Have fun writing.

Friday, September 2, 2011


     OK, here we go again.  I'm trying something different again today.  (Isn't poetry all about experimenting with new ways to communicate meaning?)  Today's poem is actually a poem with actions but WITHOUT words.
I'm supplying the description of the action, but it isn't my intent to have the reader say the words but to do the action.  Let's see if this works.

(march,     march,     march)

(blink,     blink,     blink)

(clap,     clap,     clap)

(turn around left)

(shake left fist)

(turn around right)

(shake right fist)

(jump up)

(sit down)

     Now, here is the challenge.  Write your own wordless action poem.  You could nod, look left, right, up, down, skip, hop, sway, kick, stomp.  What other actions can you think of?  Have fun.  This can also work as a chain game where each person gets to add the next line of the poem or action.  For an even greater challenge, have the person adding an action repeat all the other lines of the poem before adding their own.  I wish we were together so we could do this as a group. 

Thursday, September 1, 2011


My Tummy Hurts

With out a doubt,
it feels like
it wants to scream
and shout.

It feels like
things are
rumbling about.

I think
it wants
to throw
things out.

Oh, please!  Give me
a trash can.

I think
I'm going
to be

     Being sick is something we all know about.  Sooner or later a bug hits us all.  So today's challenge is to write a poem about being sick.  Can you try to use lots of senses?  Well, maybe you'll want to omit smell,  or maybe that is the whole point of your poem.  Have fun because being sick isn't much fun.