Things that make me laugh 2: Poems by Spike Milligan

Spike Milligan was a comedian, a writer, a poet and a manic depressive. That made him at times hilarious and at others unpredicatable and volatile. Interviewers were never quite sure how to handle him. I see the same trait in Johnny Vegas; veering from genius to dangerous in equal measures. I think Spike Milligan was one of the all time greatest humorists. He used his wit to make sense of the world. Even his epitaph was sharp. It read: ‘Told you I was ill.’

I used to use his short poems to make kids laugh if I had a few minutes left at the end of a lesson. Here are a few examples:

Can a Parrot

Can a parrot eat a carrot

standing on his head?

if i did that my mum would send me

straight upstairs to bed.

Today I saw a little worm

Today I saw a little worm

wriggling on its belly

perhaps he’d like to come inside

and see what’s on the telly?


There are holes in the sky

where the rain gets in,

But they’re ever so small

That’s why rain is thin.

Poems taken from Silly Verse for Kids published by Puffin Books 1958 (my edition 1976)

PS: For my football blogs go to : I’ve recently done one on children’s football books. You can also follow me on Twitter @Helena.Pielichat (no y)


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