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Monday, December 06, 2021

Children’s Day Special: The Day It Forgot to Stop Raining by Venita Coelho

Venita Coelho’s poem made pirates and fishermen of us all

Written by Venita Coelho | New Delhi |
November 14, 2021 8:36:55 am
A little girl with a paper boat. (Source: Getty Images)

School had just started and roll call was said

When a big peal of thunder rolled overhead

The rain started out with just one single drop

Then it poured and it pelted — it just wouldn’t stop!

There were drips there were drops

There were plips there were plops

There were tinkles and sprinkles

And splishes and splashes

And whooshes and splooshes

And oodles of poodles

And uddles of puddles

And a splitch and a plitch and a ploop and a spit

And that rain kept on raining — it just wouldn’t quit!

Soon the whole class was just a bit soggy

The garden outside was all sticky and boggy

Our books were all green. Our pencils all smelly

All the erasers just turned into jelly

The library had a really large puddle

That spread to the gym and caused a big muddle

Some of the teachers got covered in mold

All purple and spotty — they were odd to behold

The Principal came out in ferns and in fungus

The fuss that it caused was really humongous

In English the water was up to our shins

By Mathematics it was up to our chins!

When you’re in the middle of double subtraction

A fish can be a most awful distraction

Our playground was fully drowned out by mid morning

At noon they put up a shark attack warning

The water it wooshed and it swished and it wished

And it gushed and it rushed and it mished and it squished

And it rose and it rose and it filled all the school

Our fine institution became a large pool

Class One and Class Two were scared of the thunder

Class Three and Class Four were simply drowned under

Class Five had to climb on the roof in the rain

And Class Six and Class Seven were never heard of again

Just when things looked awfully dark

The watchman suggested — ‘We should build us an ark!’

We built it with homework and rulers and strings

And bits of chewed pencils and the oddest of things

There were leftover lunches and smelly old socks

Tiffins and bottles and old shoes in a box

There were library books and blackboards and charts

And a detailed diagram of a skeleton’s parts

We stuck it together with thumbtacks and glue

And it painted it over with red ink and blue

We sailed out with a cheer and a hip hip hooray

With a splish and a sploosh we were off on our way

Out on the sea that had just simply grown

Out on the ocean — off on our own!

No more homework or tests or surprise papers

We were off to have most adventurous capers

So instead of good students we’re now excellent sailors

We’re pirates and fisherman and sometimes we’re whalers

We just got a letter by birdmail today

That said it’s still raining down our old school way!

(Venita Coelho is an author and screenwriter based in Goa)

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