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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From The Archives: Rain boots

Rain boots.jpg

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 Bird Pooplympics

Bird Pooping

If you’re like me and sometimes you have quite unlucky days,
You may have been bombarded by a bird.
It may have been quite sticky, and dribbled down your front:
It’s often an extraordinary turd.

It may have been bad luck, and you may be simply cursed,
It may have had no reason and no rhyme.
But I think that your doo-dooing was part of an event.
I think that it was Bird Pooplympics time.

The Annual Bird Pooplympics are quite a fun affair.
They start with Bird Poo races (always fun).
The next event’s my favourite—the Synchronised Release
Where poops land in a pattern, one-by-one.

Of course there’s Bird Poop Hurdles—where birds must duck and weave,
Leaving little turds along the way.
However, it’s the Archery where all the birds take aim
At you and me, to decimate our day.

So when the next white dribble falls upon your lap,
Don’t shake your head, complain, or start to cry!
Yell at the offender. Shake your angry fists.
Shout “Do Pooplympics elsewhere!!” at the sky.


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From The Archives: The Bath

There once was a small toddler, just two or three years old,
And though he loved to sing and dance and laugh,
His very fav’rite pastime, his hobby number one
Was dropping random things into the bath.

He’d splash in tubs of butter. He’d splosh in tubes of paint.
He’d dunk his toys, his books and several rocks.
And when, at last, his mum or dad came ambling up the stairs,
They’d see the bath three-quarters full of socks.

“Oh Christopher,” they’d mumble, grabbing cans of peas and beans,
“Why do you love to make such dreadful mess?”
But all young Chris would do was point and open up his mouth.
“I made,” was all he’d say, no more, no less.

But then one day, he hit that age when words weren’t such a chore.
His mum took in his mess, her eyes adroop.
“Oh Christopher, why are you such a nuisance,” mum just moaned.
“But Mum!” said Chris, eyes sparkling. “I made soup!”

Bath Greyscale.jpg


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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.

the-worst-bag-ever.jpg

“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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From The Archives: Super Eraser

One boring Christmas morning, I opened up my gift.
With just one present left under the tree,
I once again grew solemn, and sad that we were poor.
Why were there never lovely gifts for me?

My gift was just a ruler, two pencils and two pens,
A small eraser and a pencil case.
My mom, who worked long hours, just wrapped me in her arms,
When she saw disappointment on my face.

“I’m sorry, Spud, I’m sorry. I wish we could have more,
But things have been a little tight this year.”
She held my arms so gently, a twinkle in her eye,
Then leaned back in and whispered in my ear:

“I think that the eraser, while looking fairly plain,
Is quite a bit more special than you think.
I won it in a raffle. It’s cutting-edge and smart.
It rubs out more than pencil lines and ink.”

super-eraser.jpg
I tested what Mum said then. I went in to my room.
It rubbed out pencil, pen, and even more.
I wandered over, pensive, and crouched down very low,
It rubbed the very carpet off the floor!

I moved up to the window. Outside there was some trash.
Some broken chairs and boxes—a whole load.
I rubbed it on the glass then, my eyes were opened wide.
Now no more junk was piled up on the road!

The next hour was a whirlwind of laughs and smiles and fun
As I found all the things I could erase.
The rubbish—gone! The dishes, the weeds all disappeared!
I cleared them all in an eraser craze!

I pondered and I planned, then. I found a secret place
To keep my new eraser safe and sound.
I didn’t want to waste it. I’d use it wisely now.
I’d save it for Mom’s stressed-out worried frown.

I’d keep it for my sister, for when she scraped her knees,
Or when she felt upset or sick or sad.
I sidled up to Mum, then, and hugged her tight and warm.
“Mom, thanks. This is the best thing that I’ve had.”

Image © Robbie Yates 2017

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