Friday Poetry: Clive Webster

Happy Friday!

The poem I have chosen today is from a poet I’ve never come across before but I throughly like this poem so thought I would share it.


The Magic of the Mind

I’ve read in books of magic lands

So very far away,

Where genies pop up out of lamps

And magic creatures play.

Where wizards weave their magic spells

And dragons breathe out fire,

Where just one wish gives young and old

Their every heart’s desire.


Those lands, of course, are just in books,

But if you try real hard,

Those magic places come to life

Right in your own back yard.

For sitting quietly in the sun

On a lazy Summer’s day

You can sit and smile and dream you’re there

In those lands so far away.


And as the sunshine warms your mind

You’re in those golden lands,

With wizards, genies, dragons, spells,

And cut-throat pirate bands.

You’re saving damsels in distress,

You’re fighting deadly duels,

You’re banqueting in marbled halls,

You’re decked in priceless jewels.


You’re there, you’re there, no need for books,

So real and oh so clear,

So marvellous and so magical,

To touch and smell and hear,

Just sitting there in golden sun

You leave your cares behind,

And go to magic places

In the Magic of your Mind.

Clive Webster


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Friday Poetry: Mandy Coe

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone has some fantastic books planned to read this weekend. I can’t help but remember that this time last year I was in Hawaii having an amazing holiday and reading some fab books by the pool.

Anyway, here is my chosen poem.

Amelia Earhart

‘…fears are paper tigers.’

A ribbon in her hair and mud on her dress

Amelia climbs too high

then, like any child in a tree,

blinks at the dizzying ground and sky.


Amelia spreads the map on her knees

to light the Atlantic with her torch.

She taps the fuel gauge, adjusts her course.

The stars seemed near enough to touch.


Amelia’s red Vega roars around

a world of cloud and sun and time,

and whenever a child defeats

her fears, Amelia still climbs.


Mandy Coe


Happy Reading

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Friday Poetry: Emily Dickinson

Happy Friday Everyone!

I can’t quite believe it is Friday again so soon. I hope everyone has some good books planned for the weekend.

This week’s poem is by Emily Dickinson.


A Bird Came Down the Walk


A Bird came down the Walk –

He did not know I saw – 

He bit an Angleworm in halves

And ate the fellow, raw,


And then he drank a Dew

From a convenient Grass – 

And then hopped sidewise to the Wall

To let a Beetle pass – 


He glanced with rapid eyes

That hurried all around – 

They looked like frightened Beads, I thought – 

He stirred his Velvet Head.



Like one in danger, Cautious,

I offered him a Crumb

And he unrolled his feathers

And rowed him softer home – 


Than Oars divide the Ocean,

Too silver for a seam – 

Or Butterflies, off Banks of Noon

Leap, plashless as they swim.


Emily Dickinson


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Friday Poetry: Spike Milligan

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone has some good book plans for the weekend.

My chosen poem this week is by Spike Milligan and I love it because it is nonsense and sometimes we all need a little nonsense in our lives. Oh and it mentions cats!


The Land of the Bumbley Boo

In the Land of the Bumbley Boo

The People are red white and blue,

They never blow noses,

Or ever wear closes,

What a sensible thing to do!


In the Land of the Bumbley Boo

You can buy Lemon Pie at the Zoo;

They give away Foxes

In little Pink Boxes

And Bottles of Dandylion Stew.


In the Land of the Bumbley Boo

You never see a Gnu,

But thousands of cats

Wearing trousers and hats

Made of Pumpkins and Pelican Clue!


Oh, the Bumbley Boo! the Bumbley Boo!

That’s the place for me and you!

So hurry! Let’s run!

The train leaves at one!

For the Land of the Bumbley Boo!

The wonderful Bumbley Boo-Boo-Boo!

The Wonderful Bumbley BOO!!!


Spike Milligan.


Happy reading!

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Friday Poetry: Stevie Smith

Happy Friday!

I hope all my fellow Book Dragons have some good books planned for the weekend.

This week’s poem is only short but it hits home with me at this time. This poem is about friendship and spending time with friends. I must admit I miss my friends at the moment. My best friend is a 4 hour car journey away and I miss her like crazy. We speak daily but it isn’t the same as a proper catch up. Hopefully we will be able to meet up soon.

Florence Margaret Smith, known as Stevie Smith (20th September 1902 – 7th March 1971), was an English poet and novelist. She was awarded the Cholmondelay Award for Poets and won the Queen’s Gold Medal for poetry.


The Pleasures of Friendship

The pleasures of friendship are exquisite,

How pleasant to go to a friend on a visit!

I go to my friend, we walk on the grass,

And the hours and moments like minutes pass.


Stevie Smith.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone.

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Friday Poetry: Emily Dickinson

Hello and Happy Friday!

I have gone for another Emily Dickinson poem this week, I promise I’m not obsessed, I think…

I like this poem because it has an air of mystery because you don’t actually know what the thing that Emily Dickinson has lost is. It also shows that to us it might be important but to somebody else it might be a trivial thing.

I Lost a World – the Other Day!

I lost a World – the other day!

Has Anybody found?

You’ll know it by the Row of Stars

Around its forehead bound.


A Rich man – might not notice it –

Yet – to my frugal Eye,

Of more Esteem than Ducats –

Oh find it – Sir – for me!


Emily Dickinson


Happy weekend everyone.

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Friday Poetry: Emily Dickinson

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone has some good books planned for the weekend. I have spent a bit of time in the garden today and it was wonderful to see the bees in the flowers which led to me choosing this poem. Sadly our pond has no frogs though.


Bee! I’m Expecting You!

Bee! I’m expecting you!

Was saying Yesterday

To somebody you know

That you were due –


The Frogs got Home last Week –

Are settled, and at work –

Birds, mostly back –

The Clover warm and thick –


You’ll get my Letter by

The seventeenth; Reply

Or better, be with me –

Yours, Fly.


Emily Dickinson


Have a good weekend!

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The Complete Poems by Catullus (Review)

The Complete Poems by Catullus (Translated by Guy Lee)

About the author


Gaius Valerius Catullus (c. 84-c. 54 BC) was a Latin poet of the late Romans Republic. He favoured writing about personal life rather than the classical heroes.

About the translator

Guy Lee was a Fellow of St John’s College, Cambridge. He is the translator of numerous Latin texts including works by Ovid, Virgil, Tibillius, and Persuis.


Of all Greek and Latin poets Catullus is perhaps the most accessible to the modern reader. Dealing candidly with the basic human emotions of love and hate, his virile, personal tone exerts a powerful appeal on all kinds of readers. The 116 poems collected in this new translation include the famous Lesbia poems and display the full range of Catullus’s mastery of lyric meter, mythological themes, and epigrammatic invective and wit.


I had to read about 40 of the poems from this book for one of the assignments in my Masters but I loved the poems so much that I decided to read the whole book.

This book has the Latin on the left hand page and the translation opposite which was a massive help when I was writing about how different translators have treated certain poems. At the beginning of the book there is lengthy introduction by Guy Lee the translator which is very informative as it gives you details about Catullus’ life, work and translation. I loved this introduction as it was very interesting and gave me a compact introduction to Catullus. The Explanatory notes were also useful and the Appendices.

This book of poems had me laughing out loud and that is not something I do often when reading poetry as I am not generally a poetry fan. I loved the humour in the poems and I will be honest I was quite shocked at how rude some of the poems were. Some poems were just two lines long and some were pages and I will be honest the lengthier ones could be a struggle to read in full.

I will be honest I have taken breaks from the book and have dipped in and out of the poems. I have also returned to old favourites and re-read them with joy. I have also found some of the poems useful to reference in my assignments.

I really enjoyed the book and I am grateful for it being part of my required reading because it has been a good read. It is also in my opinion a good translation because it is less wooden than certain translations I have also read. I highly recommend this book of poems to people who want to read more of the classics. I give this book 3 out of 5 Dragons because I did find some of the lengthier poems a bit trying.

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Friday Poetry: Vita Sackville-West

Happy Friday my fellow Book Dragons!

I hope everyone has some good books planned for the weekend. My chosen poem this week is by Vita Sackville-West who was part of the Bloomsbury Group.


Full Moon

She was wearing coral taffeta trousers

Someone had brought her from Isfahan,

And the little gold coat with pomegranate blossoms,

And the coral-hafted feather fan,

But she ran down a Kentish lane in the moonlight,

And skipped in the pool of moon as she ran.


She cared not a rap for all the big planets,

For Betelgeuse or Aldebaran,

And all the big planets cared nothing for her,

That small impertinent charlatan,

But she climbed on a Kentish stile in the moonlight,

And laughed at the sky through the sticks of her fan.


Vita Sackville-West


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Friday Poetry: Anon


I have been reading and thoroughly enjoying Alison’s Weir’s Katherine of Aragon The True Queen, so I have a chosen a related poem.

This nursery rhyme is popularly believed to be related to the execution of Anne Boleyn.


Oranges and Lemons

Oranges and lemons,

Say the bells of St Clement’s.


You owe me five farthings,

Say the bells of St Martin’s.


When will you pay me?

Say the bells of Old Bailey.


When I grow rich,

Say the bells of Shoreditch.


When will that be?

Say the bells of Stepney.


I’m sure I don’t know,

Says the great bell of Bow.


Here comes a candle to light you to bed,

Here comes a chopper to chop off your head.

Chip chop, chip chop, the last man is dead.



Happy Friday

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