Author Archives: triciasimmons

About triciasimmons

Pat worked with primary age children for many years in out of school hours and museum settings. She is a writer of short stories, flash fiction, picture books and poetry. She also loves minibeasts! (Especially stick insects) You can find more about Pat at

World Poetry Day and 100 years of the wonderful School Magazine


Thank you Jackie and PIO for giving me the opportunity to be part of today.
I love writing poetry about animals remembered in history and was delighted to see my poem ‘Mrs. Chippy’ appear in ‘Blast Off’ in 2015. I submitted this poem in 2012 and it was accepted a few months after submission. The wonderful thing about School Magazine is that they pay on acceptance – a rare treat! In 2015 ‘Blast Off’ featured Shackleton’s exploits into which ‘Mrs. Chippy’ fitted nicely. I’m delighted to have a second poem ‘A Goat Afloat’ accepted too and look forward to seeing this wonderful goat’s story published in due course. Hope you enjoy ‘Mrs. Chippy’.

Mrs. Chippy
I’m a tabby cat from Glasgow
on a ship trapped in the ice.
They call me Mrs. Chippy
and I’m here to catch the mice.

My breakfast it is seal meat,
my lunch and dinner too.
Penguin meat I will not eat.
Well really now, would you?

Pemmica’s quite tasty.
It’s a sort of meat paste dish.
The men seem to enjoy it
but I’d rather it was fish.

I do not like those husky dogs.
They’re howling growling bores.
I stroll upon their kennel tops
to sharpen my fine claws.

Our captain is called Shackleton
and shackled is the word.
We’re prisoners in this nasty ice.
It’s really quite absurd.

Our ship’s called the Endurance.
Will it live up to its name?
We’ve been stuck here for weeks and weeks.
Each boring day’s the same.

The ice is most uncomfortable.
It sticks between my toes
which is why I hide below the decks
to contemplate and doze.

I’m a tabby cat from Glasgow
on a ship trapped in the ice.
They call me Mrs. Chippy
and I’m here to catch the mice.

A little late for Australia Day but here’s my poem all about a special cat.



I’m a black cat

A special cat

A ship’s cat.

I was born on the Reliance in 1799.

Of all my mother’s kittens

I was the one most fine.

I’m a black cat

A special cat

A ship’s cat.

I have four snow-white paws

And a white star on my chest.

Of all the cats on board this ship

The sailors like me best.

I’m a black cat

A special cat

A ship’s cat.

When it’s time for dinner

I don’t eat with other cats.

I sit at table with the men.

I don’t care for rats.

I’m a black cat

A special cat

A ship’s cat.

I have a trusty friend

And Matthew Flinders is his name.

He has called me Trim.

I think together we’ll find fame.

I’m a black cat

A special cat

A ship’s cat.

Matthew is a clever man

He’s sailed all round this land.

He’s given it a name

And that’s Australia – how grand.

Perhaps you have a cat at home

Is it as fine as me?

Would it like to come aboard

And sail upon the sea?

With a black cat

A special cat

A ship’s cat.


Pat Simmons © 2014

Reflections on Healthy Eating



I really like couscous, it’s ever so healthy

But those little grains, well they’re ever so stealthy

They stick in your teeth and they just won’t come out

You poke them and prod them and push them about

But the buggers aren’t budging unless you use floss

You’ve got to get forceful and show them who’s boss.

Couscous is tricky, tabouleh’s much worse

Parsley and mint are the devil’s own curse

You must check your teeth

A small mirror’s the tool

Or your smile looks grotesque and you feel such a fool.

Today’s Poem is called ‘Rescue’



He’s funny looking.

He isn’t a puppy.

I say to Mum

He has sad eyes.

Dad says

Maybe we can make those sad eyes happy.

I say to Dad

He’s skinny.

Mum says

Maybe we can make him fatter.

Does he do tricks?

Maybe you could teach him some.

But I don’t know him

And he doesn’t know me.

So many dogs.

So much noise.

We walk up and down

Looking at the dogs.

So many dogs

But we come back to him.

He looks at me.

I look at him.

He doesn’t bark.

He just looks.


They open his cage.

He just looks

Then he licks my hand.

This is the one I say.

This is the one he says.                                   Pat Simmons © 2015

One of my 2015 goals is to blog more. Some of my poetry and flash fiction 100 worders are coming!


Week 45: Ignite – The Negatives – 100 words

She hurls the negatives into the sink. Her hand trembles as she attempts to strike a match. It takes three attempts. The negatives ignite. The smell is acrid, much like the bitterness she feels in her gut. So many years of being blackmailed but now it’s over. He’s dead and Bob, her husband, will never know about those photos. She was young and stupid then and she needed the money.


Sorting through his father’s possessions, he finds an envelope.

‘Son, if you’re ever short of cash this is her name and address and this is the negative she never found.’

Pat Simmons © 2015

Day Out List


I’m going to the beach with my grandma.

We’re packing our bag for the day

with sunglasses, swimmers and sunscreen of course

plus lollies to eat on the way.

A cushion for grandma

a beach ball for me,

(I’ll blow it up when we get there)

orange juice, water,

a bucket and spade,

a swim cap to cover my hair,

some towels and a beach mat

and sandwiches too,

(deciding on fillings is hard)

umbrellas and raincoats in case there’s a storm

and, of course, grandma’s Seniors’ Card,

some insect repellent,

a box for the shells

we collect when we go for our walk

and perhaps extra water to cool down our throats

because we just talk, talk and talk.





To hell with Leviticus, I’m going to do it.
My body’s my own if I want to tattoo it.

I’ve saved up some money so mum needn’t know,
Well…..not quite just yet,
Not ’til after I go.

I might get a dragon, or maybe a cupid,
Or ‘I love Lachlan’ – no that would be stupid.
What if he dump’s me? I’d wish I was dead.
Maybe I’ll just get my nose pierced instead.

I’ve saved up some money so dad needn’t know.
Well …… not quite just yet,
Not ’til after I go.

Tricia Simmons

The Visit


the stairs,
carefully avoiding the creaks,
we stop
and take each other’s hand.

At the bottom
we tiptoe,
towards the door.
Almost afraid to breathe
we slowly,
push it open.

Beneath the twinkling tree lights
sit the gifts.
‘He’s been,’ we whisper,
‘He’s been.’