Writing For Children: Part Two

Bougainvillea and gaudy religious statues: two things I’ll miss about Vietnam.

This is a sonnet I wrote as an example for my Year 9 English class last year who were writing love poems. Unfortunately they all wanted to write about Miley Cyrus and everything got a bit angry.

Mine was about Saigon, and it feels increasingly relevant seeing as I move home for good in 27 days. My dad described the final two lines as ‘doggerel’ but I can’t think of anything better yet. Suggestions welcome!

Emily x

Snapshot of Saigon

The morning swelter is my alarm clock –
that and the boats that pootle loudly past.
Locals up since dawn to play morning sports
Now slurp steaming hot pho to break their fast,

Vendors on bikes shout their daily cat calls,
Selling jackfruit, bananas and bahn mi,
Bougainvillea makes pink waterfalls
And adorns the houses that line the street.

A builder rouses for a day’s hard graft
As his wife washes clothes (in the famous squat),
Cafe owners prepare for the days sales,
A dog tries to steal from a cooking pot.

Like a tattoo etched upon my skin:
My beloved new hometown: Ho Chi Minh.

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