Camping

I wanted to go camping ‘cos I thought it would be nice.
I organized a tent, some bottled water and some ice.
I had such lovely thoughts about the fun that would transpire
As I relaxed in nature, sitting cozy by a fire.

The first mistake I made, though, was I didn’t bring a bed.
I’d hoped that leaves and twigs would help me rest my weary head.
So as you can foresee, I had no chance to rest my eyes,
But that was for the best, ‘cos that was not my sole surprise.

I’d packed some crisps, some crackers, jerkied beef and juicy pears.
It was to my dismay I learned that those attracted bears!
At just past three AM, you would have seen me start to shake,
I ran with flailing arms and dove head-first into the lake.

Now here’s the third dilemma I encountered on my trip:
I thought the lake would be a clever bear-deterring dip.
However, it was winter, so the lake was topped with ice,
And plunging into that was neither smart nor very nice.

At this point I was shaking out of fear and very wet.
And really, hypothermia was quite a valid threat.
I wrapped myself in blankets, and I made some tea to sip,
And then, at last, decided I would quit my camping trip.

So feeling very sorry, very cold, and not real bright,
I packed up all the tent pegs in the middle of the night.
I took one final look at where I’d camped and nearly died,
Took two steps up the back-door stairs and then I went inside.

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Image from Deposit Photos © Tetiana_Svirska 2015

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Toy Train

(This poem can be read two ways; read the bottom two lines to find out more!)

***

You know I hold no grudge, it’s not as though
You broke my precious train set just for fun.
I know you meant no harm. I’d never go:
I simply can’t forgive what you have done.
For you are so mature that no one states
You act your age at only six years old!
I never think you’d act like we aren’t mates;
I never thought you’d be that brash and bold.
You did not know the truth. I cannot say
You knew I only got it just last week.
I saw your disappointment and dismay
You watched a tear roll slowly down my cheek.
It’s merely just a toy. I’d never state
Our many years as buddies have to end.
In fact, I think this day’s made us best mates,
And so, you will no longer be my “friend.”

***

But no. I’ve reassessed. That train was mine.
So now, go back and read each second line.

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Image from Pixabay © CC0 Creative Commons 2016

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Friday Flash Fiction: Sunlight

His soft hand reached out for mine. “I’m sorry.”

My own skin, by comparison, must have felt rough. Humble. The calluses were testament to every day spent working the land. And after all, that was why I was here.

“The prognosis isn’t great,” he said, peering at his report. That meant nothing to me, but I nodded. “With aggressive treatment — well. The five-year survival rate is forty percent.”

Five years. Five harvests. If I was lucky.

My shoulders, once mountains, shook. I stared down at the mark on my skin. A childlike thought danced through my head: the pirates’ “Black Spot.” Mine, too, meant likely death.

Later, at home, I sat idly while my sister googled alternative therapies. “You could try yoga,” she said, not meeting my eyes. “Or meditation. There’s kombucha…”

I stared back at her blankly. “You’re kidding, right?”

“It’s natural,” she said, shrugging.

“So’s sunlight,” I replied.

(150 Words)

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Image from Pixabay © pixel2013 2018

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From The Archives: Allergies to Chores

Dear Mom, I have some information that is rather grave.
I got it in a very urgent call.
The hospital laboratory said I must be brave,
In order to avoid demise and pall.

The doctor on the line said, “I have never seen a list
Of symptoms and of woes as bad as yours.”
I’ll save you all the details Mom, I’ll tell you just the gist:
He said that I’ve got allergies. To chores.

“No dishes,” he commanded. “And no laundry,” he prescribed.
I’m sure you’ll see that this affliction stinks.
“No vacuuming,” I promised. “And no mops,” I sadly sighed.
“No cleaning up of toilets or of sinks.”

I know the outlook’s dreadful, now whatever shall we do?
I’ll miss the mowing; polishing; the broom.
I ‘spose that’s it for me, Mom. Since I’m feeling extra blue,
You’ll find me watching TV in my room.

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Original Illustration © Robbie Yates 2018

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New Book Release: The Kooky Kids’ Club

My new book—The Kooky Kids’ Club—has just been released on Amazon!

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Blurb:

Maxine is smart, quirky, and a bit of a misfit. One day, she receives a mysterious invitation to a meeting of the “Kooky Kids’ Club.”

Things are looking bright. It’s nice to finally have a real group of friends. Then Maxine’s teacher disappears.

Maxine doesn’t know what happened to her beloved teacher, or how she can help. But if anybody has the smarts to help Miss Thompson, it’s Maxine and the Kooky Kids’ Club…

This quirky chapter book is for the best kind of kids—the ones who are a little bit kooky!


The book is now available on Amazon as an eBook or Paperback. Grab your copy today, for the Kooky Kid in your life (or just for yourself!)

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From The Archives: Rain boots

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It’s rare to see unbridled glee but there’s a special time
That children’s faces sparkle, full of joy
It’s all the rage for every age, it doesn’t cost a dime,
Absurdly fun for every girl and boy.

It happens when it rains and then on pavers, paths and tiles
Sit puddles, cold and wet, their beckon wry.
With rainboots on they yell, “Come On!” and jump with cheers and smiles
The splashes barely missing passersby.

Now humans all, both big and small, will find it quite a treat
To jump and splash and play a little more.
Don’t fear the crud, the cold and mud, or getting soggy feet
Because that, my friend, is what rainboots are for!


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From The Archives: The Worst Bag Ever

I had a nasty habit—so teacher always said—
Of losing notes and books and hats and snacks.
She’d pass us out permission forms when it was half past three,
And tell us, “Put them straight into your packs.”

But by the time my Mum and Dad were asking ‘bout my day,
My notes and books were nearly always gone,
The next day, I’d ask sheepishly to have the note again,
My teacher would just stare at me in scorn.

“Why Billy Jones, you’ll lose your very head, one day,” she’d say.
I simply nodded, staring at my shoes.
I felt so bad. I tried so hard, but things just disappeared!
The missing things brought on a case of blues.

Then one day, Thomas Mitchell handed me an envelope.
“An invite to my party!” he said, glad.
I placed it, oh so carefully, inside my backpack then,
‘Cos if I lost it, that would make me sad.

Lo and behold, just thirty minutes later, at my house,
I could not find the invite. Not at all!
I rummaged, looked and fossicked, leaning deep into my bag,
And soon I felt myself begin to fall.

The world went dark. It all went quiet. I landed with a Plonk!
I opened up my eyes. And all around,
Were notes and books and crackers, old bananas and a shoe,
In piles and piles and piles upon the ground.

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“My goodness!” I exclaimed. “Where am I? What are all these things?”
“Oh Billy,” said a voice, “I’m glad you’re here.
You see, your backpack’s magic, so that’s why your notes and snacks
And toys and old bananas disappear.”

“What do I do?” I asked the voice. “I hate when all my stuff
Goes missing. And my parents hate it too!”
“That’s easy,” said the voice. “Your backpack’s magic—that is clear.
So all you need’s another one. Brand new.”

So shortly after, I got all my pocket money out.
I bought a brand new bag for school and sports.
My magic backpack never held another note or book.
From now on? It was just for bad reports.

Original Illustration © Robbie Yates 2017

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Finish This Poem – “Dinner Dishes”

It was with heavy heart and grimace wide
That I—the piles of dinner dishes—spied.
With caked-on crumbs and bits of dried-on sauce;
The sticky bits remaining from first course.

I looked upon the bubbles rising high
And, reaching for the gloves, let out a sigh.
I ‘spose the dinner dishes must be done…

(Can you finish this poem? 😂😂😂)

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Image from Pixabay © Melissa-Anna 2017

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Finish This Poem – “Exploring”

I really like exploring
A wander through the woods.
I love to be intrepid
I find adventure good.
I love to be in nature
My hobby’s climbing trees
The problem’s when you’re up there…

(Can you finish this poem? 😂😂😂)

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Image from Pixabay © jplenio 2016

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One Very Odd Teacher

The wonderful Shalini from Digital Reads Blog Tours has just wrapped up a very thrilling week-long blog tour to celebrate the launch of One Very Odd Teacher (eBook |  Paperback) and I couldn’t be more thrilled!

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Some highlights from the reviews:

  • “There are some books like that which just make me happy. This is one of them.” ~Shalini
  • “Worth buying and reading again and again.” ~Sara from Avid Inspri
  • “I would highly recommend One Very Odd Teacher regardless of your age but especially if you have a pre-teen. It is One Very Terrific Book!” ~Mackey from MacsBooks
  • “One of the best children books I’ve read” ~María from Bookgraphy
  • “I love Robbie Yates’ writing. His sense of humor is enthralling, and I was laughing all the way through.” ~Jessica Rachow
  • “I loved it” ~Melissa from The Perfect Honeybee
  • “I recommend this book basically for everyone.” ~Dora from Swift Coffee
  • “A delightful read!” ~Jee from HookedOnBookz
  • “[A] fast paced fun story which I am sure the young readers will love.” ~Ruchi from TheVagabond
  • “Such a fun read with some lovely touches of child humour…..Faaaaaaaaart!” ~Lesley from Orlando Books
  • “I think Yates’ book is a perfect ‘in-between’ children’s novel, which is simple enough for its young audience that the plot is not over complicated, while similarly in-depth enough for the adult or parent reader to enjoy alongside.” ~Beth from About A Book Club
  • “I loved the story. The writing was crisp and easy to read” ~Rekha from The Book Decoder
  • “This book was laugh out loud, tears running down your face funny!” ~Berit from Audio Killed The Bookmark
  • “This book is a gift. A real treat. It made me smile and laugh and yeah, reminisce.” ~Lili from Lili’s Blissful Pages
  • “If you have a curious child around you, just like Adam, this is the best book you can gift him/her for this Christmas!” ~Maya Bhat
  • “[A] fun, entertaining, suspenseful mystery that kids would love to solve. I highly recommend this book to all young readers.” ~Yesha from Books Teacup and Reviews
  • “IT WAS SO MUCH FUN!” ~Nicole from The Bookworm Drinketh
  • “Amazing book by Robbie Yates” ~Shahnila from Untie Reader
  • “A fun read” ~Nina from The Cozy Pages
  • “Perfect stocking filler for Christmas.” ~Natalie from The Spoonie Mummy
  • “Adventurous Journey | Brilliant Characters | Thrilling Plot | PHENOMENAL WRITING!!” ~Justine from Bookish Wisps
  • You can also head over to Gratissoul to read an excerpt of the book.

Thank you so much to Shalini, and each of these bloggers—it has been a BLAST!


One Very Odd Teacher is available as an eBook or Paperback. Grab your copy today!

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