Friday Poetry: Cicely Mary Barker

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone is ready for Christmas. My chosen poem today is a favourite of mine by Cicely Mary Barker.

Sadly our tree won’t have a Christmas Tree fairy living in it because our tree is artificial, this is mainly because my husband and myself are both allergic to real Christmas trees.

The Christmas Tree Fairy

The little Christmas Tree was born
And dwelt in open air;
It did not guess how bright a dress
Some day its boughs would wear;
Brown cones were all, it thought, a tall
And grown-up Fir would bear.

O little Fir! Your forest home
Is far and far away;
And here indoors these boughs of yours
With coloured balls are gay,
With candle-light, and tinsel bright,
For this is Christmas Day!

A dolly-fairy stands on top,
Till children sleep; then she
(A live one now!) from bough to bough
Goes gliding silently.
O magic sight, this joyous night!
O laden, sparkling tree!

Cicely Mary Barker

Happy Reading



Christmas Poems by Wendy Cope (Review)

Christmas Poems by Wendy Cope


For more than thirty years Wendy Cope has been one of the nation’s most popular and respected poets. Christmas Poems collects together her best festive poems, including anthology favourites such as ‘The Christmas Life’, together with new and previously unpublished work. Cope celebrates the joyful aspects of the season but doesn’t overlook the problems and sadness it can bring. With lively illustrations to accompany the words, it is a book to enjoy this Christmas and in years to come.


I bought this book in October when I was in Bath and I was really excited because I thought this little book would be a perfect festive read in December. At only 48 pages long this did not take me long to read and was a perfect diversion from the Christmas prep. 

As you probably know by now if you have been following me for any length of time I was never a huge poetry fan but since I have been blogging I have been making an effort to get into poetry. Since doing this I have found quite a few favourite poets that I enjoy to read and I am always looking for new poets to read. Wendy Cope is one of these new poets for me. 

Certain poems within this book I could really relate to. Cope was a primary school teacher for 15 years and a piano player and her reflections on playing for children’s services I can relate to as I teach piano and woodwind in a primary school and know all about the Christmas services and the many renditions of Little Donkey. 

I will be honest there were only a few poems that I really enjoyed in this book because I found quite a few of the poems rather depressing and not very helpful for getting into the festive spirit. However, I like Cope’s style as a poet and will definitely be checking out more of her poems. 

The illustrations in this book are by Michael Kirkham and were excellent and really added to the poems. Without the illustrations the book would have been a lot shorter. 

Overall, I found this little book of poems an accomplished read but not really my cup of tea. It sadly wasn’t the festive read I was looking for but I appreciate the skill of Wendy Cope. I give this book 3 out of 5 Dragons. 


Purchase Links

Book Depository | | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the poet

Wendy Cope was educated at Farringtons School, Chislehurst, London and then, after finishing university at St Hilda’s College, Oxford, she worked for 15 years as a primary school teacher in London.

In 1981, she became Arts and Reviews editor for the Inner London Education Authority magazine, ‘Contact’. Five years later she became a freelance writer and was a television critic for ‘The Spectator magazine’ until 1990.

Her first published work ‘Across the City’ was in a limited edition, published by the Priapus Press in 1980 and her first commercial book of poetry was ‘Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis’ in 1986. Since then she has published two further books of poetry and has edited various anthologies of comic verse.

In 1987 she received a Cholmondeley Award for poetry and in 1995 the American Academy of Arts and Letters Michael Braude Award for light verse. In 2007 she was one of the judges for the Man Booker Prize.

In 1998 she was the BBC Radio 4 listeners’ choice to succeed Ted Hughes as Poet Laureate and when Andrew Motion’s term of office ended in 2009 she was once again considered as a replacement.

She was awarded the OBE in the Queen’s 2010 Birthday Honours List.


Friday Poetry: Eleanor Farjeon

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone is having a good week so far and you all have exciting weekend plans. I will be honest December is not proving to be our best month. I have spent most of the week without a car and just because I have a hugely busy weekend of playing jobs my car is still not fixed so I will have to borrow my Mom’s car. This will be the first time ever my Mom will have let me drive her car.

As we get closer to Christmas I have decided to go for a Christmas themed poem.

Mary's Burden

My Baby, my Burden,
Tomorrow the morn
I shall go lighter
And you will be born. 

I shall go lighter,
But heavier too
For seeing the burden
That falls upon you. 

The burden of love,
The burden of pain,
I'll see you bear both
Among men once again.

Tomorrow you'll bear it
Your burden alone,
Tonight you've no burden
That is not my own

My Baby, my Burden,
Tomorrow the morn
I shall go lighter
And you will be born. 

Eleanor Farjeon

Happy Reading


The Lion Book of Christmas Poems by Sophie Piper (Review)

The Lion Book of Christmas Poems by Sophie Piper


This poetry anthology includes both jolly and thought-provoking poems old and new to take the reader on a journey through the Christmas season, from the advent of winter to the dawn of the new year. Poems cover much-loved themes including the Nativity and the love and peace of God at Christmas time; the busyness and joy of family life and Christmas preparations; and hope for the new year. Poems are from names including Charles Causley, Steve Turner, Clare Bevan, Edward Lear, Emily Dickinson and many more modern and traditional poets. The anthology is enlivened with pictures and photographs to showcase a whole range of jolly Christmas styles. The giftable hardback format makes this a special book to share at home, whilst the wide scope of the poems makes this equally valuable for teachers looking for assembly and classroom resources.


I really wanted a book of Christmas poetry this year so I was really pleased when I saw this little book on the Waterstones website. 

This little book contains poems by Sophie Piper who has also compiled this book and poems by poets such as Emily Dickinson, Christina Rossetti and many more. The book also contains stunning illustrations that have been done by a number of illustrators.

I love this little book that can easily be read in one sitting or dipped into when the mood takes you. The poems are well selected and really bring about the spirit of Christmas there are also a few carols inside as well. There are poems for everyone within this book and I will be honest my particular favourites are the ones about animals.

I highly recommend this little book for children and adults and it would make a perfect little stocking filler to read over the festive period. I give this book 5 out of 5 Dragons.


Purchase Links

Amazon | Book Depository | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the author

Sophie Piper is the author of numerous religious books for children, including Little Bunny’s Easter, My Baptism Book, and When You Were Small.