The Balloon Goes Up … adventures in children’s poetry

I stagger to the counter, an armful of book packages clutched to my chest. “Hello!” I say through the perspex slot. “It’s me again.” Mrs Goggins in the post office leaps into action and five minutes of weighing, printing and sticking begins as post codes and zip codes are checked. While the growing queue behind…

The Tale of Boris Snot, the Horrible and Vile

An ogre known as Boris Snotthe Horrible and Vilelooked every inch a monsterwith his grotty, beastly style. At eight foot tall with mottled skinand voice so very loud,his gruffness frightened folkand Boris stood out in a crowd. Yet Boris was a nice guyand just craved a quiet life;to have a break from pitchfork mobsand other…

Someone ought to make an anthology out of this line-up … Dirigibility

How to Conjure a Poem in Eight Easy Steps (Julie Anna Douglas) A Poem Is Like A Balloon (Philip Ardagh)     Head in the Clouds (Charlie Bown)              Suitcase Poem (Michael Rosen)                    Recipe For Flying (Julie Stevens)                Ballerina Cherry Tree (Stephanie Henson)      River Morning Walk (A.F. Harrold)                 Tell it to the Bees (Carole Bromley)            Disco Bumblebee (Dale…

DB Anthology News Update

It is now one year since I wrote a blog entry about the possibility of setting up a poetry bank to help plug a publication gap for poets who write for children. In August 2021, there followed an announcement through an article in the Yorkshire Times that the inaugural launch of The Dirigible Balloon (the…

The Book … a poem for children

A classroom book sat all forlorn, unchosen on the shelfand in its simple way it wondered sadly to itself,how many days or weeks or months or years it must there bide,till any child might pick it up and read the words inside. It knew each boy and girl within the classroom by their namesand through…

December Update … news from the mesosphere

The last winter poem has been uploaded along with sound files sent by poets and the Dirigible Balloon is almost set up for Christmas. A feature on the artistic and poetic genius that is Colin West has yet to be released (the man himself has kindly offered further unseen gems which will be added to…

Dirigible Balloon and the National Poetry Day

In the last update I said that 50 poems a month would be unsustainable and here we are approaching October with 60 poems being uploaded from 32 poets in the next ‘flight’. All in all, since August 1st 2021 we will have published 155 poems from 57 poets. The submission figures have doubled over the…

Dirigible Balloon Update August 25th, 2021

We are coming to the end of August and the successful poets who submitted work for the September flight have had their poems uploaded. Many have supplied sound files, some of which needed converting to MP3 format, some of which needed a little processing for volume levels and noise reduction. Those poems without an audio…

Lift-Off Approaches

Just a few days until the launch of The Dirigible Balloon on August 1st. We have 32 lovely poems from a dozen excellent poets with subjects that range far and wide … we have Einstein’s theory of relativity explained, a plea to rehome some mythical creatures, a knight of old without the correct underwear, the…

Two weeks to lift-off

It is now two weeks until the official launch of The Dirigible Balloon. The idea of an online publication featuring the best poetry for children from both established and new poets has moved on and is becoming a reality. We have twelve poets contributing over thirty poems altogether for the inaugural issue … but perhaps…

Suppose …

Suppose there was a place for writers of children’s poetry to air their stuff online called The Dirigible Balloon … Suppose we were not here today,behind our desks at school, and say instead of maths and grammar stuff,of which we do more than enough, both you and I could catch a bus,balloon or hippotamus, and…

The Dirigible Balloon … preparing to launch a new webzine for children’s poetry

Dirigible Balloon: the name used to describe the newly invented airships in the 18th century. From ideas originating in China, the development of hot-air balloons was carried out by French brothers Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier. On October 15th 1783 Jean-Francois Pilâtre de Rozier made the first tethered flight, November 21st Pilâtre de Rozier and the…