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Some of the poems in the children’s collection have been inspired by the work of Valerie Bloom.
A fox as red as the ripest cherries,
It barely eats any ripe berries,
As strong as an ox,
Even though it’s a tiny little fox,
As sleepy as an owl,
Listen to its little growl,
It cannot fly,
It is really sly,
As fast as lightning,
It’s barely even frightening.
A Guessing Poem
Swaying in the blue sky,
Like a cup for the bees filled with pollen,
Like a tiny bell in the bright green grass.
A Guessing Poem: Lake
A gleaming carpet of blue,
Swaying in the breeze,
With tranquil surroundings,
Wading through it up to my knees.
Drifting in the breeze
All quiet, all calm
Fast wind running through the sky
Facedown on the ground
On the mountain
It’s all a dream
Like butter melting
I Asked the Mushroom
‘Why do you hide?’ I asked the mushroom
Underneath your speckled umbrella.’
‘I hide,’ the mushroom said, ‘because
I like the dark my good fella.’
‘Why do you stand still as stone?’ I asked the mushroom,
On the forest floor?’
‘Because’ the mushroom smiled,
I like to watch the raindrops pop, you may find it a bore.
A Guessing Poem: dog
I’m a man’s best friend
I’m a park, playing, pet,
Have you got a bone to lend?
When I’m sick I go to the vet
Blue as the ocean
Long and high stems reaching towards the sun
Under the trees a gloomy flower stands
Each flower is a magician’s hat
But why does it look so sad?
Everyday the bluebell greets the sun
Laying in the grass
Longing to be noticed
Sunshine smile upon your face,
Up to the sky so high you race,
Full of joy,
Loving life, never coy,
Others seem so small around you
Wonderful wonder of nature,
Everyone stops to stare at your beauty
Raise your head to greet the sun.
I Asked the Tree
‘Why do you grow so tall?’ I asked the tree,
so tall the top I can’t see?’
‘I grow,’ the tree said, ‘because
up to the sun I want to be.’
‘Why do you have so many branches?’ I asked the tree
hundreds of them grow over time,
‘Because,’ the tree smiled,
‘I grow them for you and your friend to climb.’
I Asked the Bluebell
‘Why do you greet the sun?’ I asked the bluebell,
In the little pond.’
‘I greet the sun,’ the bluebell said, ‘because
we have a special bond.’
‘Why do you play?’ I asked the bluebell
In the green sunny park.’
‘I play’ the bluebell smiled,
To keep away the dark.’
Dancing slowly in the crisp, summer breeze
A ball of butterscotch-yellow
Forever free and completely at ease
Failing to not feel mellow
Over time, its petals started to grey
Drooping and sadly fading
In weeks then, winter returned
Laying out its icy cloak of snow.
I Asked the Green Shoot
‘Why do you wave’ I asked the green shoot
In the wind you face the sun’
‘I wave,’ the green shoot said, ‘because
It makes me greet the fun.’
‘Why do you dance?’ I asked the little green shoot
Swaying to the breeze
‘Because’ the green shoot smiled,
‘It keeps away the freeze.’
Many Colours Form
Into A Beacon Of Hope
After The Thunder
Luscious carpet of blue
Amazing reflection of the sun
Kicking the paddles of the boats
Enjoying the dancing fish
Some of the poems in the children’s collection have been inspired by the work of Valerie Bloom.
Do you enjoy the breeze?
And do you like the bees?
For a small flower just like you
Fields that you live in split in two
Or even parks
Do you ever feel afraid of the dark
I’m never in the dark I keep it away
Love is the key so I never feel grey
Light as bright as the sky
Angels watching above your head
Knite flying across the sky,
Eggs rolling across the floor.
A Guessing Poem
Tall and bright yellow,
Reaching stretching and growing,
Basking in the sun.
Lots of fresh water like drinking from a waterfall.
An amazing stream with a small waterfall.
Keeping treasure beneath me.
Enjoying the beautiful sun.
I Asked the Willow Tree
‘Why do you cry?’ I asked the willow tree,
‘I don’t like to see you sad.’
‘I cry,’ the willow tree said, ‘because
I am alone in this big countryside.’
‘Why do you have no leaves?’ I asked the willow tree.
‘Because’ the willow tree smiled,
‘Because autumn is coming and I have to be ready for the winter.’
A Guessing Poem
Stands tall in the wind
A fluffy head
A thin body
Why do you grow so big?
Is it because you can relax so high
Laying there in the sky
Lying in the grass below
Optimistically the people watch you grow
Why not discover what’s down below?
There could be something good but you don’t know
Rearing for the young birds in their nest
Everything is good to go
Even though you are unsure we love to watch you grow
Dancing in the breeze
Air into the petals breezing past
Feasting on bees
Funny yellow flower dancing in the strong breeze
Open yellow thing in the distance you will see
Dancing in the strong wind at some point you will see
I’m a flower dancing in the strong breeze you will find me in a field next to lots of flowers like a cow
Learning other people getting to know other people what am I?
Blue like the sea
Like a cup for a mouse
Under the dark oak trees
Eating water under the trees
Beds for bees
Eating the roasting hot sun
Like a berry blue
Laughing under the sun
Sat with its blue friends
A Guessing Poem
Blur reaching at the sun,
Tiny as a kitten’s paw,
A twisting treasure,
Never stopping to shut the door.
Dancing and swaying in the air
A little dandelion with grey hair
Night time comes say goodbye to the sun
Day time rises a new day begun
Energetic little fly flew on top of her head
Lazy fly made herself in bed
In the morning the wind began to blow
“Ouch!” she cried and then said, “oh no!”
Now her seeds are spreading, making new homes
Scattering away from a cat,
Quickly climbing up the tree,
Unbelievable to climb that fast,
Irritating all the dogs,
Rushing to collect the nuts,
Raindrops make you hide away,
Eagerly dancing for the rest of the day,
Loving to tease all the rats.
Dancing in the wind and welcoming the spring
As slender as a model proud of their mane of petals
Fanfare of golden trumpets playing together
Flowers in a group like they are partying at a festival
On sunny days they are happy watching the winter disappear
Dreaming they will get a visit from the bees soon
Individually very small but all together a sea of bright yellow
Luminous like the warm sun
Summer comes they began to crumble but they will be back next year
The park is closed today, due to flooding.
The gates are shut, but look
and you may see the swans and ducks who still
swim through their watery home.
The tops of trees reach up for air
and everywhere are glimpses of the
swings and slides, the fun that
hides, beneath the surface.
The park is closed today, due to social distancing.
But in the mist, I think I saw a flock of birds.
I guess they haven’t heard because
their wings were touching, huddled close for warmth
in rain slicked trees. And in amongst the leaves the
busy squirrels leap from dizzying heights,
almost in flight, then nestle close in cosy dreys,
away from grey clouds looming.
The park is closed today, due to ice and snow.
We cannot go. Though if we stand here quietly,
we may spy from the balcony, the sly young fox
that skates across the frozen pond, then rests
until its russet fur is powdered white.
The park is closed tonight. They lock it up at dusk.
We mustn’t pry, but if we raise our eyes we’ll see
the sky is moving. Shadows shaped like bats may
squeal and flit and dip to catch an unsuspecting moth.
And do you hear too-wit-too-woo? The owls are up there
too. They search for mice and voles who
hide in holes and undergrowth. But both
the hunter and the hunted must come out to eat,
while we all sleep.
The park is closed today, but those who know
would say, the park is always open.
David Rowsell, Trustee Friends of Rowntree Park
I love Rowntree Park and in particular its lake…
But why at 6.30am on a cold December morning late in 2020 do I find myself flat on my back in its freezing water…?
The answer is flipping geese… in particular Canada geese.
For over three years now I have been volunteering in the park – mainly trying to move on varying numbers of these beasts.
I have nothing against animals, indeed I have, since 2019, been a vegetarian.
I am, however, a keen historian and our park is not only beautiful but a fitting memorial to the many local victims of the First World War.
As such, I’d like to think that as many as possible visit and spare a moment to consider the horror and senselessness of what happened to so many between 1914-18 and is still happening in too many places around our world.
“Wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows…”
(Martin Luther King)
When my wife and I moved into this area, it was clear that the geese were responsible for many people steering clear of the park – the noise, the aggression and the poo of these beasts is, understandably, a massive turn off for many families especially with young children.
I shouldn’t really know this – but these birds drop 3lbs of poo each per day and when you consider that in the past there have been up to 100 geese in the park at times, that is a huge pile!
So, our valiant team of “goosebusters” work night and day, in a humane way, to persuade the geese to find somewhere else to poo.
These last few months our work has been hindered by floods and Covid – but we will continue to strive to keep our park clean for the benefit of all.
Even if it does mean that occasionally I get over enthusiastic and my chase leads me to end up in the drink!
Alisha Langhorn, age 13
It was one of the sunniest days in Yorkshire, when all the birds were chirping and all the geese were flying around the park.
The geese always love to swim in the pond with their babies which sounds quite nice for them to do during a sunny day. There are lots of things to enjoy at Rowntree Park such as the big park that has for example a zipwire, some swings for the little kids and some for the older kids, there are also some amazing statues around this park like the Viking helmet that you can sit inside. And there are also a lot of benches you can just sit on and relax in the sun whilst your kids are having fun.
The reading cafe is an amazing place to enjoy a nice hot or cold drink whilst reading a book. There is also a tennis court where you can play tennis or even badminton. It’s just a fun thing to have a Rowntree Park.
The skate park is a place where if you have a skateboard this will be something you will enjoy.
This park is also a great place to go on a walk with your pets or your family.
It’s just one of the most amazing places in the whole of Yorkshire.
Edward Shakeshaft, age 11
As the white flakes of snow cascaded down on the reticent roads; the hushed breeze sliced through the air. A distant tweet of a bird and a faraway bark of a dog were the only noises. The trees had been caked in snow and the many alluring forests dazzled in the blinding light of the sun. This was the definition of peace – bliss and silence.
The sea blue water of the river rushed and gushed as the swings of Rowntree Park squeaked. The shouts, cheers and happiness of the children who once played here still lived in the ancient buildings and trees of the park. Not a soul on earth was here – they had all disappeared. The true beauty of nature now showed in its spectacular own way. Before humans, nature was all that existed. The completely white mountains of the Arctic – to the bare, blazing sand of the Savannah. Nature is hiding its secrets that we are yet to find. Rowntree Park – 100 years of peace and happiness.
Many memories centred in that very park – ten decades of joy. Many generations of children had joked and laughed on these rustic benches. Sitting on this bench makes me realise how much the world has revolutionised and how much I would like the world to revert to how it was before – peace. I think of all the innocent animals that have lost lives and in these difficult times it is harder than ever. Nature is a big part of sustaining happiness in our lives, if we look after our planet and keep it safe, our future generations will live longer.
Abby Levers, age 18
The poem below surrounds the topic of mental health, and how sharing one’s thoughts and emotions can not only help themselves through recovery but also aid others in their own understanding and growth; the image of water is used to symbolise this. It is called “thoughts flow” and is written purposefully in all lowercase with little to no punctuation to make it pleasing to the eye. You will find it below:
thoughts flow in a stream past my conscience
gather in puddles, lakes, and ponds
hold home to my swimming sentiment
when the weather is hot, clouds begin to form
and when the rain starts to fall
I pour and overflow
droplets form a trickle till it all gushes out
breaks through the boulders
leaks through the cracks
and from my fountain of knowledge, they drank
until I was dry of my worries
dry of my woe
before the clouds can draw in to snuff out the sun
I sprinkle when they look underwatered
and I watch us grow together
Charlotte Hudson, age 11
Amelia wanted it to snow more than anything: a white blanket covering the hills, the moors and the woods (her favourite place to be). Then suddenly, her dream came true! Thank goodness it was the Christmas holidays otherwise she would be skipping school just to play all day in the snowy woods. Amelia rushed upstairs after breakfast, eager to throw snowballs at her brother. As soon as they were there, Jake (her brother) was already rolling up snowballs to make the base of a snowman.
They turned to the direction of a snapping twig. Amelia and Jake took steps back very slowly. As they were about to scream, a little fox came out of a berry bush! It was shivering, covered in snow and staring at the children. Amelia crept towards the freezing animal while Jake hid behind a tree. Brushing the snow off the shivering creature, the girl whispered to her brother, “Go and get Dad and tell him to bring some of Charlie’s food.” Jake nodded and went off to get his dad and the dog food. Minutes later, their father appeared in the clearing with a can of dog food and a plastic bowl.
“Eat up, buddy,” Mr Landis chuckled, pouring the food into the bowl. The fox started scoffing the food as if it hadn’t eaten in days.
“You know, we have left over chicken,” explained Mr Landis “Let’s take this little guy to our garden and toughen him up.” The family trudged back to their house, opened the gate and led the fox into their garden. Their dad went into the house to find the chicken so Amelia and Jake were in charge of the fox. It seemed rather interested in Charlie’s ball so Jake and Amelia threw it in the air and the fox jumped up and caught it. “Look at him go!” laughed Jake. When Mr Landis appeared again, he was joined by his wife (Mrs Landis) “So is this the little foxy?” she asked, pointing to the fox. “Yes, it is!” explained Amelia, “Dad, can I give him the chicken?” “Well actually, he’s a she,” explained the children’s mother.
“How do you know, Mum?” Jake questioned.
“Well, when I was younger, I volunteered at a fox shelter.”
While they were talking, Amelia was giving the fox a feast of the ages. She’d also decided to call her Luna because her fox-teddy-bear was called that. Randomly, Luna decided to lie down, close her eyes and start to snore. Everyone looked at each other. Finally, Mrs Landis nodded, signalling for them to leave her be. Luna remained their close friend for many more months. She even had cubs!
Max Stampfer-Todd, age 10
How calm are they,
I wish us humans,
Could be quite the same,
They paddle in their pond,
While we scramble on land,
Finding a solution,
For this moment of crisis,
Are paddling in their pond,
Without a care in the world.
LuLu Morris, age 8
See the dewdrops trickling down the branches of the tall tree trunks.
Smell the refreshing scent of the newly washed woodland.
In the morning sunlight beams and streams through the leaves and it looks so beautiful.
Deer roam around quietly, spot the footprints of them.
Squirrels scamper around, jumping from branch to branch.
If you’re lucky you might see one.
Leaves tickle your arm if the path is thin, ferns brush at your legs.
In spring shoots appear and snowdrops start to sprout.
Later on wild roses bloom, and bluebells cover the mossy ground.
The scent of them is like perfume.
The sound of the birds singing makes me warm inside.
The forest is wonderful.