This page is for your Slightly Scientific poems.
The great thing about poetry is that there is no right or wrong way to do it. But a good poem is one that can be shared with others to discover they like it too.
Your poem doesn’t need to rhyme, it can be free verse or other poetry types, but it must be your own original work. It could be an observation you have made, or something that you are passionate about, as long as it has some strand of science and/or nature in it.
To help you write a poem, here’s Celia’s Definition of Poetry: “A poem is a way of writing or reciting words that have been carefully collected and combined so they have a sense of rhythm. Their form and feeling provides a heartbeat which brings them to life. They are made from chosen words that dance, rather than walk. They parade our ideas, emotions and points of view in ways that are different from normal speech or writing (which we call Prose). A poem is a group of words that have some kind of pattern. And poetry endeavours to use the best words in the best order, using techniques such as alliteration, repetition and vivid description – from metaphors, similes and onomatopoeia. If Prose is likened to noise, then Poetry is like music.”
To send us your poem, click on the “Your Say” tab at the top of this page and fill in the “Send Your Feedback” form at the bottom. If you are a student, please tell us what grade you are in.
Harmonie wrote Blowing Up A Riddle for the 2013 Science On The Oval event at Whitfield State School and came second in the Cairns Junior Eisteddfod with the presentation of her poem Sunshine. Zoë wrote Destruction at a Poetry Workshop with Celia in June 2012. Elise’s poem Humidity and Claire’s poem Evolution were written specially for the 2012 Science on the Oval event. Zoe and Jaymee from Mossman State School wrote a great poem each during our “Slimy Rhymes” workshop on 11th April 2011. Kristen wrote The Sun, which she performed at the Science On The Oval event on 6th April 2011. Alex and Jessica created posters for the event. Edge Hill State School grade 1 students have written some poetic lines about the weather. Claire from Whitfield State School wrote the poem Electricity especially for a Science & Poetry Mix-up presented by students at the Tropical Writers Festival in Cairns on Sunday 17th October 2010. There are ten poems about slime from students at Ninelands primary school in England (2010) and twelve poems about the sounds of friction from Cairns students who took part in the Writers Festival at Trinity Bay High School (2009).
We reserve the right to choose and rotate which poems are displayed on this page.
Your Poem by You
This could be your poem!
Farther into the unknown
by Merrissa Sorrentino
Life is the question. The answer, a riddle
But somehow we always get stuck in the middle
A complex emergence encrypting the code
The farther we wonder into the unknown.
Is it hidden somewhere in our “junk DNA”?
Or deep in the wrinkles inside of our brain?
Does gravity hold the answer inside?
Twisting and warping our view of space-time?
We sift through reality, lacking adhesion
Searching its matrix with no rhyme or reason
With each door we open, two more may appear
So answers become complex and unclear.
Uncertainty certainly plays a big role
By setting a limit on what can be known.
I assume this is how the rabbit-hole deepens
Just as we thought we were close to completion.
We still ask the question. No answer arrives.
So what is the purpose and meaning of life?
Kinrara Station is about 110km south of Mt Garnet where Robyn can be found mustering cattle. She submitted this poem for a Creature Features Poetry Quiz. Do you know what this animal is?
by Robyn O’Brien
My spiky hair is like your nails
but I only have a tiny tail.
My nose is long and covered in dirt
but unless you’re an ant, you won’t get hurt.
Some say my name is quite extreme.
I belong to the family Monotreme.
A single egg hatched in ten days.
Born blind and hairless, in a daze.
After I’m born, they call me a Puggle
and in Mama’s pouch I love to snuggle.
My hairy spines grow in three to four weeks.
Then snuggling mother could cause some shrieks!
Ché lives and works on a station in remote northern Queensland and participated in a poetry session I held at Mount Garnet State School in August 2013.
Flies In Utopia
by Ché Damant
The jungle is where I silently sit.
Flies and bugs all around me flit.
From far, a beauty beyond compare.
But get too close? You shouldn’t dare.
My scarlet flesh is ripe and raw.
Its putrid smell will rot your core.
But carrion-flies I will torment.
They just adore my deathly scent!
Sunshine by Harmonie
Whitfield State School
Sunshine is an ingredient
In most nature recipes
Like beautiful coloured blossoms
On a jacaranda tree.
Sleeping in the winter
They are woken up by spring
And as the purple colour forms
You’ll hear birds start to sing.
A recipe for beauty
Always contains the Sun
And when it comes to nature
Sunlight is number one.
When a butterfly shows its colours
There’s just one thing it needs
Coz it’s nothing like a flower
Or some itty-bitty seeds.
Now here is the ingredient
And this the butterfly knows:
Sunshine is the only thing
That makes its colours show.
Another nature recipe
All plants must use the sunlight
When they are doing this.
Nothing on Earth would be alive
Because the plants make oxygen
And we need it to exist.
And yet another recipe
Is energy from sunlight
Which everything on Earth uses
By day, if not by night.
We use the Sun’s energy
For more than just its light
But the Sun’s not powered by batteries,
That cannot be right!
If you have solar panels
Then you would use the Sun
It would be your power source
That’s how your lights would run!
But the best thing about sunlight
Is how it makes me feel inside
To me, when the Sun is out
The world is open wide.
On those perfect sunny days
We like to have some fun
But there’s someone we ought to thank
Yep, that’s right - the Sun!
Greg Crowther is Acting Assistant Professor in the Division of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the University of Washington in USA. His web pages include music scores, videos and lyrics he’s created about science. Here’s some science lyrics Greg has written about cell division.
by Greg Crowther
Mitosis is a process (mitosis is a process)
by which a cell divides (by which a cell divides).
A sequence of four phases (a sequence of four phases)
by which it must abide (by which it must abide).
Prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase
(prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase)
Prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase
(prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase).
Now prophase is the first phase (now prophase is the first phase)
the chromosomes appear (the chromosomes appear).
In metaphase they line up (in metaphase they line up)
at the middle of the sphere (at the middle of the sphere).
The chromosomes are split up (the chromosomes are split up)
as anaphase goes by (as anaphase goes by).
And telophase then seals ‘em (and telophase then seals ‘em)
in brand-new nuclei (in brand-new nuclei).
Blowing Up A Riddle by Harmonie
Whitfield State School
I’m an underwater mountain
In the middle of the sea
And if you want to scuba dive
It’s possible you’ll find me.
When boiling magma gets too hot
Too hot for me to bear
I blow my top and I erupt
Sending ash into the air.
But when I am doing this
Magma has a different name
It’s known as lava, even though
The two things are the same.
When magma is still underground
It makes my insides rumble
When it’s bursting out as lava
My outsides start to crumble.
If you haven’t solved this riddle
I’m a mountain that might blow
So better heed my warning signs
For I’m a VOL-CAN-O!
Laura lives in London, England. In this poem, she shares her experiences with the condition Synaesthesia (where two or more of our senses – such as sight, sound, touch, taste and smell – respond to a stimulus most of us would only identify with one sense).
This Thing Called Synaesthesia
by Laura Hindley, UK
“That smells like Beethoven!” I excitedly exclaimed to my class at school.
To which they sniggered, poked fun and continued to be cruel.
I, of course, knew what I was talking about completely
and gritted my teeth whilst forcing myself to smile sweetly.
The object of controversy lay ever so still on my wooden desk.
Gleaming with yumminess, very soon to become a crumbly mess.
The Christmas Pudding still emanated a classical tune
with which Handel and Bach would have both been over the moon.
Misunderstood by most people who witness my quirky senses and thoughts
little do they know how the miscommunication in my brain renders me rather fraught.
Oh how my life would be much easier
if I didn’t have this thing called Synaesthesia.
Just the other day I had a friend round to my house for tea.
I asked “Does your chip butty taste like circles? Or is that just me?”
Since a look of pure confusion passed across his animated face
I quickly took back my tangled remarks with a great amount of haste!
He told me that his sandwich only tasted of bread and chips
followed by a request to teach him how to taste shapes and even give him some tips.
I explained that my brain was just wired in such a way
causing my sense to cross over, with me unable to have any say.
The astonishment in my friend’s face made me feel like a super-hero!
Not the loser from school who felt like a complete zero.
Now my life is becoming much easier
Because I have this little thing called Synaesthesia.
I’ve become quite a celebrity within my school it would seem.
Especially when I say that Mrs Munro’s lessons sound like the colour green.
Instead of laughing at my condition, children stand rooted to the spot, amazed.
They’re asking me questions repeatedly. I’ve become quite a craze!
I excitedly skip to school every morning with new stories to tell my friends
of how my Mum’s chicken curry tastes like a rectangle with pointy ends.
I feel sorry for the children who pine for my super-powers
and pretend that they can taste sweets when looking at flowers.
This is a gift that I would definitely never wish away again
for I wouldn’t be as happy with my life if I had a different brain.
Why did I ever want my life to be easier?
I’m blessed with this little thing called Synaesthesia.
Merrissa shares her love of physics, chemistry, astronomy and everything mysterious with her two daughters (including this poem about Quantum Reality). Her passion is creating glow-in-the-dark jewelry with her husband under their business name Clover 13 in Texas USA.
by Merrissa Sorrentino, Grand Prarie
When we start peering deep inside the tiniest of things
far beyond what human eyes are capable of seeing
the sub-atomic world defies the laws of entropy
and particles begin to act with uncertainty.
If we measure one’s velocity, position or its mass
it causes other magnitudes to become less exact.
A photon for example may just simply disappear.
The act of observation makes its outcome more unclear.
A particle of light can also double as a wave.
A duality that’s sure to leave you scratching at your brain.
It comes down to this. Of the view we once had;
what wasn’t now is, what is will soon pass.
Physics and light-speed, black holes and time.
All of these seem to be intertwined.
Like the fabric of space bent around a large mass
the gravity of this can be hard to grasp.
It will make you go mad, then beg for some more.
That’s what all those crazy equations are for!
Will we ever find a theory for all?
One that unites the large with the small?
Or will it continue to boggle our minds?
Forever entangled between space and time.
American published poet Kevin D Taylor has written a sonnet inspired by Alfred Tennyson’s The Kraken – only Kevin’s poem is about a real monster that lived during the Cretaceous Period. Around 100 million years ago this formidable reptilian predator swam in the seas whilst dinosaurs roamed on the land.
Find out more about the fossil Kronosaurus queenslandicus at the Australian Museum’s website.
by Kevin D Taylor
Through outspread spans of oceanic murk
While from him every fearful fish-form flees
Intrepid, to where lessers dare not lurk
Descends the ancient monarch of the seas.
Leviathan surpassing all for size
At whose first glimpse the craven pale will dread
He casts the shadow of his regal head
Across the fluid realm that is his prize.
Concourses of molluscan creatures fill
His potent jaws as masticated fare
And mingle with devoured crustaceous krill
Seized in the death grip of his agile fangs.
In depths unfathomed timelessly he hangs
Skulking and watching with an icy stare
For who is next to be his captured kill?
Destruction by Zoë (age 11)
Whitfield State School, Cairns
Destructive and demonic
Category three, four, five
The roar of the wind
Descending upon poor villages
Ripping and wrenching
Roofs off their hinges
Red dusty deserts
Welcome the life-giving rain
When some suffer pain
Where broken trees and ripped leaves are left to die
Birds and bumblebees will fly
Evolution by Claire
Whitfield State School, Cairns
Changes happen every day
Slowly gradually in many ways
Like humans used to be one little cell
Now we are complex strong and well.
What is this process called evolution?
It’s like a slow-motion revolution
Creatures adapting to their home
Wherever they may choose to roam.
Evolution is here in many ways
And doesn’t happen in a matter of days
Adjusting and adapting to a new area
Can take a species many millennia.
Evolution is the fish in the sea
That turned into apes wild and free
From those apes humans emerged
From their trees they scattered and surged.
We wouldn’t be here on planet Earth
If that small cell hadn’t been in the surf
To think we wouldn’t be alive
If one little cell hadn’t arrived.
Humidity by Elise
Whitfield State School, Cairns
She can make you feel
very very sticky and
very very icky.
I bet bet bet
she can make you sweat
All day long she’ll feel very strong.
She causes condensation
a soft damp sensation.
She moves with fluidity.
You can’t see her
nor can you hear her.
You can’t tame her or blame her.
She’s only made of water vapour!
The Slug by Zoe
i m e
s l i p p e r y
A Belly Full of Slime by Jaymee
What if you were sick
Sick with a nasty cold
Spewing up disgusting stuff
That looks like really old mould
What if it was the mould
That made you really sick
A belly full of slimy stuff
Maybe even a mossy stick
The Sun by Kristen
Whitfield State School, Cairns
Let the moon glitter
Let the rain fall
But what we need most of all
Is a sun shining bright
The Sun gives us light
Light for the day
I may be far away
But I’m still as powerful as they say
You may not know this
But I’m fully renewable
Just as gum is chewable
But anyways back on track
I’m a star and that’s a fact!
I’m not the biggest of them all
Compared to them I’m rather small
I’m mostly visible during the day
But at night-time I’m hidden away
Well now it’s time for me to set
Off I go …
Weather – poetic lines from year 1 students
Edge Hill State School, Cairns
Sunny weather can make me happy
and makes my armpits sweaty and wet.
Rainy weather makes muddy puddles.
I’d better get a rainproof jacket.
Windy weather flies like a feather.
Snow can make you sniffle and sneeze.
Stormy weather’s loud and scary.
But when it’s finished a rainbow appears.
Electricity by Claire
Whitfield State School, Cairns
Electricity runs through my veins
while you are playing video games.
I am a battery, strong but small.
But you would not think that at all.
You would think I’m small and weak.
But my chemicals can hurt if they leak.
Do not ever set me on fire
for my power is too strong to desire.
I am the power of toy trains.
I am the power of video games.
Do not open me for what is inside.
It’s something that is meant to hide.
Mum’s Slimy Horror by Tilly
I made a box with mucous goo
worms and even fish.
I gave it to my mother who
took it as a gift.
She thought it was the shower cream.
When she came out I heard her scream.
She was absolutely covered
in slippery slimy goo.
I hope this never happens to
me and you!
Saliva by Victoria
in my bedtime
When my Dad isn’t looking
I put saliva on the door
It’s no use it just falls off
and lands on the floor.
Frothy frogs are like
squishy slimy slugs
and they eat
squirmy oozy bugs.
They live in
the mucous-filled swamp
and there’s a sloppy icky place
where they eat.
It’s called the Domp.
Slippery Chips by Maegan
Chips are golden ripe and ready
Have I seen some vinegar or ketchup?
I ooze slippery viengar on the American plate
Put on some ketchup so the dribbling smooth
slippery chips slip right in your slimy mouth.
Slimy Goo by Irwin
Slimy goo rolls all over my arm
but it doesn’t do any harm.
Slimy goo rolls all around
but it doesn’t make a sound.
Slimy goo is on my hood
then I drop it in the mud.
Oozy goo in my slimy bed
then it drops all over my head.
Jellyfish by Phoebe
Jellyfish are really smooth
They are ever so wobbly
Fish that glide in the ocean
L:iving in the sea
Like a snail on a barn gate
You and me think they’re gross
Although we can’t touch them
Because of the sting
When they sting they really hurt you
So here are the jellyfish.
Jolly Jelly by Callum
Jolly jelly wobbling all over
even in the fridge.
Lovely squashy squishy jelly
making lovely jelly waves.
Looking very squished.
Yes it’s very squished.
TV Dessert by Milly
I like to eat jelly
that goes in my belly
while watching the telly
with my best friend Ellie.
Silly Shampoo by Lauren
It always falls off my hand
It slops when it drops
It smells of heaven
Always smells of horribly nice stuff
Makes your body covered in shampoo
When it falls off your head
you hair will be smooth as a snake.
That’s all about silly shampoo.
And the last one from the children at Ninelands is
Flying Shampoo by Rosie
Shampoo slops and drops
down on the ground
Flies out the window
spins round and round.
The next poems are from studens attending the Writers Festival at Trinity Bay State High School in 2009
Wild Horses by Stephanie
(Trinity Bay SHS grade 9)
The ground rumbles and shakes
as if nature itself is quivering in excitement.
The untameable wild horses thunder past
moving through the trees
like mist over water
with their loud booming neighs and grunts
they move like the wind through the snow gums.
Daring and cunning they tear up the grass
and prance in circles
twisting and turning
they are pulled by their instincts
living by voices only they can hear.
They graze the vast and open grasses
only to vanish like ghosts
in the silver misty rain.
Graceful Whales by Lauren
(Trinity Bay SHS grade 10)
In the silence of the blue sea
The graceful whales call to me
A long and mournful song
singing and wailing long
Then they appear out of the blue
As if right on cue
Dancing and gliding as if flying
strange giants soaring
Then shooting out of the water
and crashing back down
frolicking and rolling playfully
onlookers laughing gaily
But this is no game
Finding a mate is the aim.
A Patchwork of Word Sounds
(by grade 6 & 7 participants at the Writers Festival)
Whoosh goes the balloon as the air escapes
Bang then Crash I heard a big smash
Ping is the ringtone on my phone
Under my shoe a slug goes squish
The fizzle of a soft drink echoes through my home
The door creaks open as the wind swishes in
A dancing ballerina, pitter-patter pointy shoes
I could hear the whisper of a night-time cloud
The ink black marker against the white board
came with a squeak that squawked
And bunnies are funny when they ping off the ground
or even hop on a mound
Friction is used to stick stuff together
and also to seal your pants!
A zing went bang, a whoosh went squeak
I had to be fast or I’d bleat!
Car Go Zoom by Rebecca
(Whitfield SS grade 7)
Don’t make your car zoom
or the engine will go Ka-boom
Then an idea goes ping
and to the engineer you zing
They can’t fix your car
so you suddenly yell ahhhhh!
Harmonic Essence by Tallulah
(Trinity Bay SHS grade 9)
A flutter of wings erupting through the air
The chirp of birds sounding everywhere.
The shed door banged shut by a farmer in fleece
Interrupting the pure serenity and peace.
The gruff footsteps of his boots
putting the sounds of nature to mute.
But once his presence has disappeared
the harmonic essence has reappeared.
The flutters and chirps of birds are now clear
These pure signs of nature detected by the ear.
Hero by Natalie
(Trinity Bay SHS grade 8)
As his cape swishes forward
the hope glints in our eyes
anticipation for our hero to arrive.
The crashes, the pops, the booms
they lift our spirits high.
The culture of the superhero
is well and truly alive.
She’s standing there waiting.
The story’s heroine
watching our daily lives
waiting for crime to strike.
Ready to leap and stop the villain.
As a child we wear their capes
to feel confident, invincible.
All throughout our lives we still keep
our masks and capes
in the form of make-up and fancy clothes.
To give us the confidence of a hero.
Rushing River by Bec
(Trinity Bay SHS grade 12)
A river rushing roaring past
Desperate not to be the last
Pushing pulling at the leaves
Carry them like watery thieves
Puddles by Daijah
As I splash through the puddles with my muddy boots
I listen to owls making their hoots
For everyone is gone and the town is quiet
On this lonely night
The Noises I Hear by Liam
I hear the crackling of leaves
the whoosh of the wind
The crash of the waves against the shore
I sit on the sand beginning to bore
I hear the crunching of sand
The stomping of feet
The bleating of sheep
The Strange Sound by Lily
(Freshwater SS grade 6)
One night as I lay awake in bed
a strange sound flew over my head
I shot straight up and peeled my ears
and then I thought I heard it near.
I jumped out of bed and flicked on the light
to find there was nothing in sight
Except for my room and my bike-lock key
and then I saw it. A little bee.
Lemonade by Kate
(Trinity Beach SS grade 6)
Fizzle went the lemonade
Almost ready and made
Bubbles pop at the top
and sizzle and fizzle
like excited whispers
of happy children
And when you drink it
you get a sudden tingle
(by grade 8 & 9 participants at the Writers Festival)
I like the sound of old creaking trees
and the sound of a fly on a mid-summer breeze
The giggling glee of children’s false fright
or thunder on a stormy night.