Skip to main content

Cautionary Tales

A Cautionary Tale-Desmond Dove's Demise




I have always enjoyed the cautionary tales made famous by writers such as Hilaire Belloc and Ogden Nash. Cautionary tales were designed for the admonition of children and were quite popular more than a hundred years ago. Belloc's Matilda (who told lies and got burned) and Nash's Isabella (who didn't care) have always resonated for me. It was the writing of these authors that spurred me to write some cautionary tales of my own. The poem I'm sharing today is about a boy called Desmond.


DESMOND DOVE'S DEMISE
 
A child that only a mother could love
Was an apt description for Desmond Dove 
With a rough tough head and hair so wooly
-Desmond was a fearsome bully

Every day around the school
Desmond’s reign was oh so cruel
In line, Des knocked heads together
And then announced –Boy, aren’t I clever!

He stole food from little kids
Then bopped them with their lunchbox lids
He always pulled on Polly’s hair
And told the teachers- I don’t care!

He teased Elyse and made her cry
And squirted mustard in Scott’s eye
He put paint in Hannah’s shoe
And filled Nigel’s pockets up with glue

He throttled Jason, kicked Sheree
He got a stick and whacked Sam’s knee
He stood on Mandy’s chair and broke it
He wrote a rude word –then he spoke it!

But, then he taunted Big Denise…..

-And now poor Desmond rests in peace.

Alan j Wright

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Opposite Poems

Opposite Poems


In his book, 'How To Write Poetry,' Paul Janeczko presents the idea of opposite poems. Paul suggests they could also be referred to as antonym poems. This is wordplay and it's fun to try.

Here are some examples Paul provides to help us see very clearly how these short little poems work.

I think the opposite of chair
Is sitting down with nothing there

What is the opposite of kind?
A goat that butts you from behind

Paul Janeczko

You will  notice the poems are written in rhyming couplets. They can be extended so long as you remember to write in couplets. Paul shows us how this is done.

What is the opposite of new?
Stale gum that's hard to chew
A hot-dog roll as hard as rock
Or a soiled and smelly forgotten sock

You might notice that some of Paul's opposite Poems begin with a question. The remainder of the poem answer the question posed.

Opposite poems are a challenge, but it is a challenge worth trying. Not every thing has an opposite and not every word has an easy t…

List Poems Are Easy To Like

A list poem is one of the easiest kinds of poems to write because it doesn't require a set rhythm or rhyme. But that doesn't mean you should write anything down helter- skelter.

Consider the inclusion of the following elements to make a list poem a poem instead of just a list:

• The writer is telling you something--pointing something out--saying, "Look at this," or, "Think about this."
• There's a beginning and end to it, like in a story.
• In other words, the poem needs to make sense and have some kind of flow to it.

List poems provide an easy and successful structure to get children feeling more comfortable with poetry. They are to be found in the poetry of many cultures and have been employed successfully by many contemporary poets.

Poetry is full of surprises. List also need to be full of surprises. Without the occasional surprise your list poems will have all the appeal of a supermarket shopping list on a day when you don't want to go shopping!

Here …

Ottava Rima Poem

Today I've gone Italian with an Ottava Rima poem. An Ottava Rima is a poetic form made up of eight lines that rhyme. Each line consists of eleven syllables.The Ottava Rima in its current form was first created by the Italian poet, Giovanni Boccaccio. It is based on a poetic form then used in Sicily, incorporating an alternating rhyming scheme throughout its eight lines. The double rhyme in the last two verses was introduced later on.

An Ottava Rima poem is made up of an octave with the rhyme pattern:
ab
ab
ab
cc

This poem presented an interesting challenge, but then again a challenge is a good thing for a poet. I kept returning to it across a couple of weeks. 

Distancing myself from the words allowed me to return with a clearer vision about what my poem needed in order to settle. Sometimes making a poem is akin to working with Lego pieces. When the word arrangement works, you hear everything click into place. 

Some tinkering and line movement proved quite useful in the end. I would recomm…