The Dirigible Balloon
Poetry for Children

Let’s Go to the House of the Neighbourhood Witch

Listen to Rose and Bláthnaid read Niamh's poem ... SFX licensed by Audio Micro
Let’s go to the house of the neighbourhood witch
we’ve all been invited for lunch;
the strange invitation said “I have an itch
to cook something nice that will crunch.”

First we arrive at the crooked old gate
and her cat writes our names on a scroll;
we were warned that it’s critical not to be late
as it angers the resident troll.

And once we’re inside we are measured and weighed
on a scale that seems sorcery-driven;
we don’t understand why these records are made,
the reason for this is not given.

The fact that we’re all put in big heavy chains
I suppose isn’t cause for alarm;
it’s just a precaution, the next cat explains
and we won’t come to any real harm.

I thought that her guests would at least have a chair
but instead we’re all stood in a queue,
for a cauldron that’s spouting green smoke in the air
from some kind of bubbling stew.

The first kid’s been greased from his head to his toes
with a foul-smelling glutenous paste,
and the cat reads a recipe, muttering low,
I think he said “season to taste?”

Another cat rings the big round dinner gong
with a smile that would curdle your toes;
now the witch has appeared! With a large pair of tongs!
So what is she planning with those?

The witch looks quite hungry, she’s licking her lips
and gesturing towards the green stew,
and a sign on the cauldron says “Time for a dip!
Get in! You’ll feel good if you do.”

Now the clumsiest cat has dropped keys on the floor
and the first kid’s unlocked everyone,
and given us something we’ve not had before:
A great opportunity! RUN!!!

About the Writer

Niamh Savage

Niamh writes poetry and rhyming stories for children, and likes to record them too. Her work has been published in The Caterpillar magazine. She is from Dublin, and works for Ireland's public service broadcaster, RTÉ, as a television broadcast co-ordinator. She has worked extensively in children's programmes over the years.