The Dirigible Balloon
Poetry for Children

Fish Under Ice

Listen to Coral read her poem ...
We step through snow,
my little brother
filling my footprints
with his own wellied feet.

The small hollow in our garden
cups the pond in its icy hands,
surrounds the fish under ice
with reeds as stiff as castle walls.

We brush the glassy water
with mittened hands,
pour warm water
to melt the frost
that clouds
the pane.

Then we see them –
the flick of a tale,
the gold of a scale,
drifting slowly like
ghostly submarines.

And my brother,
full of questions, asks,
‘Can they breathe?
‘Are they cold?
‘Do they sleep?
‘Can I hold?’

But I just wonder
at their patience,
as they wait for
sunshine and
a warm breeze
that whispers,
‘The spring will come,
‘the spring will come.’

About the Writer

Coral Rumble

Coral won the Caterpillar Poetry Prize in 2018 and has worked as a poet and performer for many years. She has featured on CBeebies and her work is included in 'Favourite Poets' (Hodder). She has four poetry collections published and has also contributed to more than 160 anthologies for children.