Spotlight Poetry – The Hippopotamus’ Birthday – A Poem by Emile Victor Rieu

The image depicts an Illustration / cartoon figure titled Little Hippopotamus by Liusa the artist at dreamtime. The work is a humorous cartoon of a hippopotamus holding a birthday cake with six candles. The image supports the poem The Hippopotamus' Birthday written by Emile Victor Rieu.

The Hippopotamus’ Birthday by Emile Victor Rieu

He has opened all his parcels
but the largest and the last;

His hopes are at their highest
and his heart is beating fast.
O happy Hippopotamus,
what lovely gift is here?

He cuts the string. The world stands still.
A pair of boots appear!

O little Hippopotamus,
the sorrows of the small!

He dropped two tears to mingle
with the flowing Senegal;
And the “Thank you” that he uttered
was the saddest ever heard

In the Senegambian jungle
from the mouth of beast or bird.

Poem Attribution © Emile Victor Rieu, The Hippopotamus’s Birthday

Source Attribution A Poem For Every Spring Day, Ed. Allie Esiri, Macmillan

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Illustration Attribution © Liusa on dreamstime, Little Hippopotamus

Source Attribution Pinterest / https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-illustration-little-hippopotamus-cartoon-blue-celebratory-pie-image49837445

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Spotlight Poetry – You Are Old, Father William – A Poem by Lewis Carroll

The image depicts a 1901 illustration titled Father William Standing on his Head by the artist Peter Newell.The work is litho print. "Old Father William standing on his head", An illustration for Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, The image supports the poem You Are Old, Father William written by the poet and author Lewis Carroll.

You Are Old, Father William by Lewis Carroll

‘You are old, Father William,’ the young man said,
‘And your hair has become very white;

And yet you incessantly stand on your head –
Do you think, at your age, it is right?’


‘In my youth,’ Father William replied to his son,
‘I feared it might injure the brain;

But, now that I’m perfectly sure I have none,
Why, I do it again and again.’


‘You are old,’ said the youth, ‘as I mentioned before,
And have grown most uncommonly fat;

Yet you turned a back somersault in at the door –
Pray, what is the reason of that?’


‘In my youth,’ said the sage, as he shook his grey locks,
‘I kept all my limbs very supple

By the use of this ointment – one shilling the box –
Allow me to sell you a couple?’


‘You are old,’ said the youth, ‘and your jaws are too weak
For anything tougher than suet;

Yet you finished the goose, with the bones and the beak –
Pray, how did you manage to do it?’


‘In my youth,’ said his father, ‘I took to the law,
And argued each case with my wife;

And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw,
Has lasted the rest of my life.’


‘You are old,’ said the youth, ‘one would hardly suppose
That your eye was steady as ever;

Yet, you balanced an eel on the end of your nose-
What made you so awfully clever?’


‘I have answered three questions, and that is enough,’
Said his father. ‘Don’t give yourself airs!

Do you think I can listen all day to such stuff?
Be off, or I’ll kick you downstairs!’

Poem Attribution © Lewis Carroll, You Are Old, Father William

Source Attribution https://www.oatridge.co.uk/poems/l/lewis-carroll-you-are-old-father-william.php

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Painting Attribution © Peter Newell, Old Father William Standing on his Head, 1901

Source Attribution https://www.mediastorehouse.co.uk/fine-art-finder/artists/peter-newell/old-father-william-standing-head-23660108.html?prodid=85249

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Spotlight Poetry – On the Ning Nang Nong – A Poem by Spike Milligan

The image depicts an illustration titled  On the Ning Nang Nong by the artist name unstated . The work is a vibrant  illustration filled by the chaarcters in the poem set against a styalized background. The artist has used a palette of bright colours  that infer the joy of the poem.The image supports the poem On the Ning Nang Nong written by the poet Spike Milligan.
© Illustrator (Unstated), On the Ning Nang Nong, (Date Unstated)

On the Ning Nang Nong by Spike Milligan

On the Ning Nang Nong
Where the Cows go Bong!

and the monkeys all say BOO!
There’s a Nong Nang Ning
Where the trees go Ping!
And the teapots jibber jabber joo.
On the Nong Ning Nang
All the mice go Clang
And you just can’t catch ’em when they do!
So it’s Ning Nang Nong

The cows go Bong!
Nong Nang Ning
The trees go Ping!
Nong Ning Nang

The mice go Clang!
What a noisy place to belong
is the Ning Nang Ning Nang Nong!!

Poem Attribution © Spike Milligan, On the Ning Nang Nong

Source Attribution https://childrens.poetryarchive.org/poem/on-the-ning-nang-nong/

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Painting Attribution © Illustrator (Unstated), On the Ning Nang Nong, (Date Unstated)

Source Attribution https://www.whitefield-pri.lancs.sch.uk/blog/2016-03-11-16-01-37-and-the-monkeys-all-say-boo

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Poetry Spotlight – There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly – Anon

The image depicts an illustration from the front cover of a book titled There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly by the artist Pam Adams. The work is a vibrant illustration for a children's book front cover. The image supports the poem There was an Old Woman who Swallowed a Fly - poet Anonymous.
© Pam Adams (illustrator), There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly – Classic Books with Holes Board Book, Publisher: Child’s Play International Ltd

There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly – Anon

Nursery Rhyme

There was an old lady who swallowed a fly;
I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady who swallowed a spider, that wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her!
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly;
I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady who swallowed a bird;How absurd to swallow a bird!
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her!
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly;
I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady who swallowed a cat; imagine that! She swallowed a cat!
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her!
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly;

I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady that swallowed a dog; what a hog, to swallow a dog!
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,

She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her!
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly;
I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady who swallowed a goat; she just opened her throat and swallowed a goat!
She swallowed the goat to catch the dog,
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider

That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her!
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly;
I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady who swallowed a cow; I don’t know how she swallowed a cow!
She swallowed the cow to catch the goat,

She swallowed the goat to catch the dog,
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird,
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wriggled and jiggled and tickled inside her!
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly;

I don’t know why she swallowed a fly,
Perhaps she’ll die!

There was an old lady who swallowed a horse;
She’s dead, of course!

Poem Attribution © Anonymous, There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly, (Nursery Rhyme)

Source Attribution 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/There_Was_an_Old_Lady_Who_Swallowed_a_Fly

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Painting Attribution © Pam Adams (illustrator), There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly – Classic Books with Holes Board Book, Publisher: Child’s Play International Ltd

Source Attribution https://www.waterstones.com/book/there-was-an-old-lady-who-swallowed-a-fly/pam-adams/9780859537278

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Spotlight Art – Anthology of Poetry – A Book Cover – Design 14 by Goff James

The image depicts a book cover design that is untitled as yet by the poet Goff James. The work is an illustration of abstract shaped leaves in red, black and purple within a circle inset within a green square. The design is set against a black background. The title and subtitle lettering is in a bold white font.

My work on producing a collection of small poems remains on going. 

I continue to be about two thirds of the way through gathering and redrafting some of my my early poems together. The redrafting is taking up much more time than I anticipated.

Here is another taster.

I continue to work on more designs for the front cover. I have several titles under consideration. Recently two or three have become firm favourites.

The design above is another one of my experimental initial front cover ideas.

It continues to be, very much so, work in progress. 

Dear readers your views with regard to the design would be much appreciated

Many thanks to all for your feedback and suggestions.

Book Cover Design Attribution, Goff James, Anthology of Poetry

Copyright (c) 2021 Goff James – All Rights Reserved 

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