Korean Kindergarten Lunch

We line up with our lunch trays
for Mrs Park and Mrs Kim
to serve our lunch.
The youngest go first and
sometimes we have to wait
because Henry plays instead
of washing his hands.

Ooooh !! Look at Henry’s lunch !!
Octopus !! It doesn’t taste of anything !!
And it take so long to chew.
I hope Mr David tips mine in the bin
back in our classroom when we are eating.
Last week he tipped my yucky
seaweed rice globs in the bin.
Yay !! Only seaweed in the soup today.

Crumbed cutlets cut in strips !
With honey mustard sauce !
Even Mrs Jenny eats that.
Mrs Park gives her lots.
And yellow pickles radish !! Mmmm !!

Mrs Jenny is still learning how
to use metal chopsticks.
On her first day here
Mrs Kim turned her chopsticks
round the right way
in her hand.
Foreigners are very strange.

Previously posted October 2016

Korean Kindergarten Lunch

Cram Schools

After 8 am to 2 pm classes
Korean elementary school
children scurry in ten seater
vans to city cram school
classes in maths, science
violin playing, English,
Tae Kwon Do, and other
subjects sought by eager
Korean mothers whose
duty is to choose correctly
for their children’s education.

Three seventy minute classes
roll on to 6.30 pm as vans
continuously drop off and
collect the young students.
After 7 pm dinner and
homework under mothers’
watchful eyes the children
sleep until breakfast next
day and school again at 8 am.

In high school the days
lengthen to 10 pm then
on to team sports on
Saturdays. Parents and
grandparents retain Sundays.

Many high school students
unwind at computer games
late into the night.

Previously posted October 2016.

Cram Schools

A Short Analysis of Sir Walter Raleigh’s ‘To A Lady With An Unruly And Ill-Mannered Dog Who Bit Several Persons Of Importance’

An interesting comment on the development of the study of English literature at university level.

Interesting Literature

‘To A Lady With An Unruly And Ill-Mannered Dog Who Bit Several Persons Of Importance’ is a long title for what is not that long a poem. Its author was Sir Walter Raleigh – not the Elizabethan and Jacobean explorer and poet (who didn’t introduce tobacco and potatoes to Europe), but the Professor of English Literature named Sir Walter Raleigh (1861-1922). Raleigh was, notably, the first person to hold a Chair in English Literature at the University of Oxford. Raleigh was also a successful poet, as ‘To A Lady With An Unruly And Ill-Mannered Dog Who Bit Several Persons Of Importance’ demonstrates.

Your dog is not a dog of grace;
He does not wag the tail or beg;
He bit Miss Dickson in the face;
He bit a Bailie in the leg.

What tragic choices such a dog
Presents to visitor or friend!
Outside there is the Glasgow fog;

View original post 311 more words

A Short Analysis of Sir Walter Raleigh’s ‘To A Lady With An Unruly And Ill-Mannered Dog Who Bit Several Persons Of Importance’

Sunshine Award

Thank you to https://thewalkingowl.com for nominating me for this award.

You nominated me for “Dog’s Old Age” posted on 27 December 2018, saying you appreciated its spirituality.

How important is spirituality in your life ?
I think I find it in everyday situations with everyday people. If you can’t find it there you can’t find it anywhere. It has to be within us all the time, not separate or above us.

Where does your happiness come from ?
It comes from the everyday experiences and everyday people in my life. After several years of retirement I realise how much I used to rush through life, as did the people around me. It was hard for us to appreciate all we had.

Do I feel the divine in others ?
I am not sure how I do this. I do feel very strongly that  poetry should include children, animals, the elderly and the ordinary everyday mortals going about their ordinary lives.

What are your perceptions of self ?
I think I value myself, even when others feel I am not getting things right. Other people need to do this too, to become fully self aware.

How do I want to be remembered ?
I want to be remembered by friends and family for being who I am, not what others expect me to be.


I posted “Brownie” on October 9 2018, and you made really interesting comments on how to develop caring relationships between children and animals. It would be really interesting to read more of your views on this subject.



Sunshine Award

Foreign Teachers

Korean Government in 1995
decided to move forward
with English fluency as
they rebuilt their country
to a grand economy
after forty years’ slavery
under their militaristic
aggressive neighbour
then the maelstrom of
a border war.

Korea would learn to increase
imports and exports, develop
and produce goods sought
by countries who would pay
well. she would keep pace
with the English speaking
country which helped her
stand against her enemy
siblings at the north end
of her peninsula.

Korean government in 1995
set up recruitment of
native English speakers
to teach in state schools
and cram schools. No teacher
training, simply follow the
workbooks Korean style;
east and western cultures
met in a grand slam !

These foreign teachers expect
eight hours work day, take
sick leave and summer holidays,
argue with senior staff !

Why would they do that ?

Foreign teachers are
very hard to understand.

Previously posted October 2016.

Foreign Teachers

Dog’s Old Age

In the garden Nana talks
with the man who will mow
her lawns, trim the edges.
Brownie is happy to see
them in the garden. She picks
up her old brown ball in her
teeth, runs across the grass,
drops the ball at their feet,
looks up hopefully, expectantly.
They smile, say “Hi Brownie”,
But they don’t play with her.

The visitor fetches his mower.
Nana goes inside and lies on
the couch as she has often
down over the past year while
her family talk about her
heart, doctors, hospitals,
operations, rest.

Brownie has come home after
a month at her doggy day care
place, with her mutt friend Whitey
with the black ear, five cats,
two turtles, twelve budgerigars.
Now other people take her on
her morning walks. Nana rests.

At twelve years old Brownie’s
arthritis is held at bay by
pills, diet dog food, long walks,
but rarely by playing with Nana.

Previously posted October 2016.

Dog’s Old Age

Healthy Living

On healthy food
healthy interests
sound learning in
school and university
she raised her children.
In their adulthood
she cycled, swam,
nurtured the environment,
labouring in her garden
growing many vegetables
and abundant fruit.
She fed them to her
grandchildren. She
painted, made play dough
models with them, took
them walking with her dog
around the leafy park.

Retiring from her long time
profession she reached
out to a fuller life in
home, family, environment.

Now her energy drained
as her heart imploded
weakness by weakness as
successive genes failed.

Full of medications now
her mind and body rest
often on her bed.

Previously posted October 2016

This post is a day early as we have vast quantities of relations
in our town this year. I may not get to the internet tomorrow.

Healthy Living