The Spaceship Shook

pink planet
The Spaceship Shook

 It was suddenly midnight blue

and a light flashed through

the hitherto unreachable galaxy.

Mars, Jupiter and Neptune were fun

but travelling beyond the Milky Way we spun

out of control on the intergalactic highway.

The spaceship shook and veered to the right.

Before our eyes was the most spectacular sight:

a purple and green place filled with shooting stars!

Our hair stood on end as we dropped

between multi-coloured, popped-

open comets and angry-ganged asteroids.

We left our craft, clambered on a falling

star and went pink-planet exploring.

This was whizzing- wild alien territory!

A whispering breeze took us from planet

to planet as a cold, crystal blanket

of singing ice sighed and parted.

The planet’s floor was creviced and black.

Pale purple mountains moaned as a crater began to crack

open and we drifted to a satin lake.

We glided out into luminous night

in a boat of curious sight

and entered a most peculiar city.

Buildings rose and dropped and bopped around

as a billion silver people danced upon the ground

and waved while a vanilla river swept us away.

At last we came upon a catapulting star

that shrieked and shot us up, out far,

till we landed back on the now invisible spaceship.

In full throttle and changing gear

we began to steer

our way to earth.

From far, far off we thought we

heard the sounds of mirth,

of a billion silver people laughing.

But a little blue moon put out

its arms to dance with our craft

and we never did find out who laughed.

Instead, we clapped and we wept

for it had been fun

but we couldn’t remember

how it had all begun.

And we wanted to do it again,

and again, and again.

                 © Andrew Pender-Smith


This poem has been used as a choral verse in schools, appears in an anthology of the Speech and Drama Association of South Africa, and in a collection of poems called ‘Fantastic Spacey Racy Thing and Lots and Lots of Other Poems’ by Andrew Pender-Smith. Those interested in using the poem are free to do so provided full acknowledgement of the author is made. If you enjoyed this fantasy poem, you may enjoy ‘A Strange, Sweet Lullaby’ published on Green Monkey Publications on the 12th of February 2018.

With good wishes,

Andrew Pender-Smith




Super Cool Doodle Bug Art Genius

Super Cool Doodle Bug

Super Cool Doodle Bug Art Genius


A Confession Session:

Don’t blame the boys in

the neighbourhood.

Don’t blame the lonely old man in

the park with nothing to do.

Don’t blame the girls on their bikes

or the guy with the blue spiky hair

for the amazing graffiti on the wall.

I’m the doodle bug that sneaks out

in the dark.

Lightning quick on the draw,

if you’ll excuse the pun,

I take pictures from in my head

and put them on the wall.

I think it’s super cool to

see people’s faces in the morning.

Who put that there?

Amazing. Wizard. Magic.

Absolutely wicked!

This run-down place is now an art space,

a gallery of wild imagination.

Yo, bro.

Check it out, man.

So don’t blame anyone but me

for the art work that’s blowing your mind away,

and it’s absolutely free.

From the doodle-bugging art genius that’s

really, really


                      ©   Andrew Pender-Smith


This poem comes from a collection of seventy five poems called FANTASTIC SPACEY RACY THING AND LOTS AND LOTS OF OTHER POEMS by Andrew Pender-Smith. The collection can be found at

Kindly note: Unless otherwise stated, all images on this website come from free image stock.

De Green Monkee Says ”Happy Easter”


Baby Easter Chicken

De Green Monkee says ‘’Happy Easter’’

If like jus like me,

an my mad an crazy family,

you celebrate de Easter, I say

‘’Happy Easter’’ to you.

I wish you peace an happiness

at dis happy Easter time.

Don eat too many Easter eggs.

Watch de beer an wine,

or you might take one swing too many

an fall off de branch or

ka-boomps de-boomps onto your

bums right off de forest vine.

Keep de happiness, make friends wid all.

Dis not de time for fighting, fighting.

Now pass de peace an de monkee wine.

Happy Easter!

© Sebastian de Vervet









De Green Monkee Speaks

Funny Vervet Monkeys_5

De Green Monkee Speaks

Pssssst! So babee,

you wanna know about

de green monkee?

You see me here.

You see me dere

when I swing frum

tree to tree

wid great agility.

When I’m eating de fruits,

or swimming in de jungle pools,

I’m tinking, tinking, tinking

because I got de hobbies

like dancing, writing, singing.

One big day I might be

de world’s most famous

dancing, writing, singing monkee,

but for now I chill, my brudder,

an enjoy de monkee beer

an eat de forest fruits, mon,

because life is cool, mon,

an slowly, slowly

I’m swinging, lazy, lazy

in dis forest tree.

© Andrew Pender-Smith and Sebastian de Vervet

Teachers and students are free to use this poem on the condition that the author is acknowledged.

De Green Monkee Speaks Again

I been tinking, tinking about

dis career business.

I don won anyone tinking I’m

just no swing-about.

Even when I’m drinking de best in

monkee beer,

my mind, my bro, is agile.

It’s workin’ absolutely clear.

If dis dancing, writing, singing business

is not de ting for me,

I’ll study a course in

monkee philosophy,

because my mind can jump from here

an’ my mind can jump from dere.

I dink I’ll run for president

or maybe monkee king.

Now it’s time for more beer, mon,

while I do my clever, clever tinking.

© Andrew Pender-Smith and Sebastian de Vervet

Teachers and students are free to use this poem on the condition that the author is acknowledged.

The Green Monkey is the brains, when he’s not drinking too much monkey beer and swinging from fruit tree to fruit tree, behind ‘Green Monkey Publications’. He’s the one who keeps a sharp lookout on its two authors, Andrew Pender-Smith and Craig Carden, to make sure they aren’t in the least bit slack and keep on writing.  His full name is Sebastian de Vervet but he is simply called ‘Sabs’ by friends and family. The top shows Sebastian as a baby with his parents.


This photo is of Sebastian’s uncle, Uncle Herbert de Vervet.

A ‘High Five’ for Drama


A ‘High Five’ for Drama

A ‘High Five’ for drama for every child in every school. I have taught, written about, and adjudicated drama in schools for long enough to know that there really is no greater teaching tool for helping children become well-rounded, confident adults.  See earlier posts for more of what I have said on the subject and to obtain poems that can be effectively used in the drama classroom. The photos in this post are here to illustrate the poem ‘The Jungle’ by Andrew Pender-Smith.


The Jungle

The jungle’s alive with

jungly sounds:

Screeching parrots

and grunting tigers.

The beating of jungle drums.

The roar of a far-off waterfall.

The loud trumpeting of

an old, grey elephant

and the galloping hooves of a buck

as a growling lion chases him.

Run, buck – runnn!

                     ©    Andrew Pender-Smith

Teachers and students are free to use this poem. I hope they enjoy using it.

Once again I include one of my maxims: ‘A poem a day helps build vocabulary the easy way’.


Speech and Drama College SA

The Speech and Drama College SA has been doing good work in the field of Speech and Drama since 1945. Along with examinations in Speech and Drama, they hold competitions in public speaking, forum discussions and other forms of spoken communication. To learn more about them, you may visit their website at

I taught their syllabus and that of Trinity College London for over thirty years.

You may visit the Trinity College website at   Much of what I taught and, most importantly, how the syllabi from these respective organisations encouraged me to teach, helped shape my thinking as a teacher of the dramatic arts and can be found in the book COLOUR ME MORE: Teaching Dramatic Arts by Andrew Pender-Smith. It is designed with teachers new to the discipline in mind. For those teaching English, there is also COLOUR ME MORE: Teaching English Language and Literature by Andrew Pender-Smith.

Visit to learn more.


The Best Taxi in Town

‘The Best Taxi In Town’ brings you some South African humour. First written, published and performed nine year ago, this is one taxi that is still going strong. As to what the chicken’s got to do with it and who owns it, read the poem to find out.


The Best Taxi in Town, Bru.

I’ve got twenty.

There’s room for three more.

Don’t worry about

breaking the law.

The steering wheel’s

held together with string.

The pedals aren’t too

good for pumping.

The hub caps were stolen.

The back wheel fell out.

Yes, madam, we can take

7 more children.

Squeeze them in between the

chicken and the goat.

Don’t worry, the seat’s quite safe.

I used one role of sticky tape this morning.

Come on, baba.

You sit there.

Because there’s no window

you’ll get fresh air.

Don’ worry, sissie.

I’ll go peep-peep

good and fast.

I know the way.

No, not twenty minutes.

I’ll do it in ten.

Yes, yes my music’s the

best in any taxi.

Ask the police who

always try to stop me.

Don’t worry, lady.

There’s room in the boot.

When we get to your place

I’ll stop and I’ll hoot.

I’ve got the best taxi in town, bra.

I’m telling you for sure.

No, madam, I don’t

drive like a tsotsi.

I’ve got my licence

and I know about the law.

If you look, he’s coming now

so I’m going sharp-sharp.

I don’t want to go phakathi

or pay a great, big fine.

I lost the key

So I use the wire.

Here I go too sharp.

What! Your police car broke down?

OK sergeant, get inside.

I’ll take you to the station.

For you it’s free.

Trust me

ek sê, my bra.

Move up, gogo.

Shesha, manje!

Sit here, sergeant

and hold the gogo’s chicken.

The front tyre’s a bit flat,

but don’t mind that,

because I’m telling you sergeant, my bra,

I’ve got the best taxi in KZN.

Yes. Parp! Parp! We can take some more.

It’s five rand and please squeeze in,

but mind the gogo’s chicken!

©   Andrew Pender – Smith


baba – grandfather

tsotsi – thief

ek sê – I say

sissie – sister

phakathi – inside (As in inside prison.)

shesha manje – quick now

gogo – granny

KZN – KawaZulu-Natal

In Happy Celebration



Both of these works are now available on Amazon as e-books. To find out more, click on the link below.

Also just released is the poem ‘Aftermath’ by Andrew Pender-Smith. It is among a number of others to be included in the 2017-2019 syllabus of the Speech and Drama Association of South Africa.


The wind and waves boomed up the lagoon

crashing surf and sand over invisible rocks.

The fish were gone –

flailing fathoms deep

while gutted shells cracked and splintered.

The trees bent violently before being


over the roiling waters

as fishing boats spun and whacked

into brittle shards.

The once brightly painted hulls

were now no more as remnant after

remnant was snatched into the

savage tumult of boom and horrible roar.

Jagged out to sea or shore-bound as lightning

zapped and zithered from rock to black water

and scarred rock again.

When dawn coloured in, the place was almost silent

except for the little sighs of the wavelets,

barely significant in happy low tide.

And also, darting and blithely unconcerned,

lots of tiny fishes

liquid and  playfully light

swarming the carcass of a lost-eyed turtle.

Above them was the booted crunch of the

lone photographer

delighted with this series of newsy images.

They’d tell a story in

neatly framed pictures

of what he’d simply title


Andrew Pender-Smith

Note that copyright is held by the author. The poem may be used with acknowledgement.