Poetry: I Opened a Book – Julia Donaldson

Post 184

I stumbled upon this poem by accident when I was deep into a Pinterest session. You know those times when you’re just scrolling through your Pinterest timeline for a few seconds. Then you find something funny and scroll further and all of a sudden two hours have passed… Anyway, that’s how I stumbled upon this gem!

Julia Donaldson is a British poet, playwright, writer, songwriter, performer… She started out singing in the street, making up her own songs and then rolled into a career of songwriting for children’s television. She also kept on writing “adult” songs and released two CDs. Then she published some of the plays she wrote for a young audience, followed by her breakthrough book The Gruffalo which really kickstarted her career as a writer of children’s books. And in between all of this, she’s also written a bunch of poetry, which she published in her own poetry books as well as in anthologies and collections with others.

I Opened a Book
Julia Donaldson (2014)

I opened a book and in I strode
Now nobody can find me.
I’ve left my chair, my house, my road,
My town and my world behind me.

I’m wearing the cloak, I’ve slipped on the ring,
I’ve swallowed the magic potion.
I’ve fought with a dragon, dined with a king
And dived in a bottomless ocean.

I opened a book and made some friends.
I shared their tears and laughter
And followed their road with its bumps and bends
To the happily ever after.

I’ve finished my book and out I came.
The cloak can no longer hide me.
My chair and my house are just the same,
But I have a book inside me.

I really, really love this poem. It encapsulates perfectly what reading means to me: an escape into a new world, a chance to let loose your imagination. And of course, I love happy endings!

Happy reading,

Loes M.


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