Poem of the Month

May 2022

The theme of "little boy lost" is a recurring one in Australian poetry - but mine has a happy ending! This poem was written a few years ago and is loosely based on "The Ant Explorer" by CJ Dennis.

A Vital Lesson
Shelley Hansen 2015

The promise of earth's riches had enticed his feet to roam
along the path to Razor Gorge, which took him far from home.
He parleyed with a caterpillar, dallied with a snail,
and tiptoed over tiny ants that crissed and crossed the trail.

He hoped to spy a platypus within a fern frond's shade -
but when he reached the creek a new discovery was made.
A boiling rush of turgid water swelled the swilling stream
as leaf boats bobbed and danced to dodge the sunlight's golden gleam.

Forgetting his surroundings in this wonderland of play,
he hadn't meant to wander quite so very far away.
The sun began to vanish as he realised with fright
that he was caught between the days and shortly facing night.

The darkness grew. He didn't want to think what lay in store.
Quite suddenly, it wasn't fun to be here anymore.
He didn't like this hunger game, and thought about the tea
his mother would have cooked for him. How worried she would be!

Imagine his relief to hear a welcome voice ring out!
He heard his father's "Coo-ee!" and he answered with a shout!
A cold and hungry, frightened boy - to safety soon returned
with tragedy averted and a vital lesson learned.

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