Primary School Poetry

My mum and dad encouraged my brother and I to read lots and lots. I still have all my favourite books on my bookshelf from childhood, primary school and high school and I am so glad I kept them. Kaelan has begun randomly pulling books off the shelf to look  at the pictures in them and one of those I found lying on the couch this morning. It was Please Mrs Butler by Allan Ahlberg. This book is pure primary school poetry – and I had a great giggle reading it this morning. The thing is – he had just the perfect understanding of the primary schooler and I remember at the time reading it with joy and relief, thinking: It isn’t just me!!! As a serious young scorpio books like this were my saviour. Thanks mum and dad. Here’s one from the book that is STILL relevant for every school girl:


It is a Puzzle

My friend

Is not my friend anymore.

She has secrets from me

And goes about with Tracy Hackett.


I would

Like to get her back,

Only do not want to say so.

So I pretend to have secrets from her

And go about with Alice Banks.


But what bothers me is,

Maybe she is pretending

And would like me back,

Only does not want to say so.


In which case

Maybe it bothers her

That I am pretending.


But if we are both pretending

Maybe we are really friends

And do not know it.


On the other hand

How can we be friends

And have secrets from each other

And go about with other people?


My friend

Is not my friend anymore,

Unless she is pretending.

I cannot think what to do.

It is a puzzle.



Oh the agony! I remember it so well. And I am not sure we ever actually grow out of it. So I am happy my children have not yet entered the complex world of school-yard friendships, and perhaps Kaelan, as a boy, will not go there quite as soon as Rosella may, but when they do at least they will have old friends like Allan Ahlberg to understand them!