Reading Level: Grade 6

Poems suitable for reading by 11-12 year olds.

When Larry Made Lasagna

When Larry made lasagna
all his neighbors stopped and stared.
His lasagna was the largest
that had ever been prepared.

He used ninety yards of pasta
and a half a ton of cheese,
and the sauce, he spread with spatulas
that looked a lot like skis.

With a hundred pounds of vegetables
and wagon-loads of meat
plus a tiny sprig of parsley
his lasagna was complete.

So he lifted that lasagna
with a forklift and a crane
and he placed it in an oven
that was longer than a train.

For a week, while it was baking,
its aroma filled the town,
till he took it from the oven
piping hot and golden brown.

All the neighbors came and tasted it
but frowned at him, and then
they complained, “It needs a bit more salt.
You’ll have to start again.”

The World’s Fastest Bicycle

My bicycle’s the fastest
that the world has ever seen;
it has supersonic engines
and a flame-retardant sheen.

My bicycle will travel
a gazillion miles an hour —
it has rockets on the handlebars
for supplemental power.

The pedals both are jet-propelled
to help you pedal faster,
and the shifter is equipped
with an electric turbo-blaster.

The fender has a parachute
in case you need to brake.
Yes, my bike is undeniably
the fastest one they make.

My bicycle’s incredible!
I love the way it feels,
and I’ll like it even more
when Dad removes the training wheels.

My Excuse

This morning I was walking
past the local county jail
when I was captured by a pirate
just released on bail.
He took me to his pirate ship
and taught me how to sail,
and made me wed his daughter
who was covered by a veil.
We sailed the seven stormy seas
through hurricane and gale,
but while we were marauding
we were swallowed by a whale.
We soon escaped by torturing
the whale with a nail,
and floating to the shoreline
in an empty wooden pail.
An Indian then guided us
along a western trail,
and led us to a stagecoach
that was carrying the mail.
We all delivered letters
through the sleet and snow and hail,
until we found a train
and then we rode upon the rail.
I barely made it back to school
to tell you of my tale.
I’m sorry that I missed the test;
I hope I didn’t fail!

Christmas Memories

Note to Readers: Unlike most of my poems, this one is not
intended to be funny. This is a special poem for this most
festive day of the year. I hope you enjoy it.

Late December, through the snowing
nighttime comes a gleaming glowing,
growing till it’s shining, showing
to the children who believe.

Santa Claus comes sledding, gliding
with his sleigh and reindeer riding
over rooftops, Rudolph guiding
each and every Christmas Eve.

Bringing presents packed in wrapping
to the children, nicely napping,
who’ll be snipping, ripping, clapping
in the morning, ’round the tree.

Yes, tonight he’s lightly landing,
with the reindeer he’s commanding,
on our housetop, stretching, standing,
bringing gifts for you and me.

Down the chimney Santa’s sliding
with the presents he’s providing.
‘Cross the floor he’s stepping, striding,
carrying upon his back

slingshots, seesaws, slides and swingsets,
rocking horses, rides and ring sets,
capes and crowns in queen and king sets,
all within his magic sack.

With his presents now he’s kneeling,
near the tree that taps the ceiling,
leaving balls and trucks for wheeling,
reeling round the kitchen floor.

Flicking flakes of fallen flocking
from his suitcoat, smiling, rocking,
Santa stands and stuffs each stocking
with a doll or dinosaur.

Carefully each gift is meted
till each girl and boy is treated.
Then, at last, his work completed,
Santa Claus prepares to go.

High his hefty sack he’s heaving
up the chimney, lifting, leaving,
in a blink beyond perceiving
and he’s off into the snow.

Now the dawn is slowly breaking,
all the children yawning, waking,
hasten to the happy making
of a wondrous Christmas morn.

Near the yule log’s dying ember
we discover and remember
all our lives that each December
childhood memories are born.