Back-to-school Blues


You can see I’m a little late posting this poem. But I’m sure it’ll work just as well for starting term 4 …


The school break is over.
It’s time to prepare,
re-set the alarm clocks,
start brushing my hair.

My hat smells quite musty,
my shoes need a shine.
I can’t find my jumper —
this one isn’t mine …

I’ve got those
Term 3 back-to-school blues.

What’s this in my backpack?
My lunchbox is black.
I think it’s gone mouldy and
my drink bottle’s cracked.

Back to boring old sandwiches,
apples, (no cake).
How many sleeps
’til next holiday break?

I’ve got those …
yes I’ve got those …
I’ve really got those
Term 3 back-to-school blues.


Times Tables Champ

‘Basic’ was a hard word to weave into a poem — did anybody else out there have a go at it? I kept coming back to one memory from when I was 9. That memory still stings, so I wrote about that.

Times Tables Champ

Every Friday afternoon was our Times Tables competition,
we stood in twos up the front,
there was always a pause before the teacher called the sum.
I hoped for a basic one,
tens and elevens were best —
my mouth could shout the answer
before my head had heard the sum.
(Fives were good too, but I never liked eights much.)

One Friday I beat the reigning champ.
When I sat down
someone behind me muttered
“You’re not the true champ,
you’ve only won once.”

Rebecca Newman 2014