Out of the classroom and on their way - “We’re off, we’re off!” said Poppy so pleased; “We’re off’ we’re off!” said one and all.... As on the tiny coach they squeezed. Singing so happily and jumping about - They’re on their way for pebbles to find; The beach at Hornsea productive indeed - To look for fossils, they have in mind. “Here we are at Hornsea beach!” Laden with trowels and all aglow; Onto the sand they leap and scramble, Up and down, to and fro. Searching hard among the pebbles, Through the litter and sand they prod; “What is this?” said John, said John “Oh!” said Alice “A chunk of Cod!” “Put it down! – it stinks!” says teacher, “Out of the sea, NOW!” she calls: Maisie smiles and splashes about, She trips: into the water she falls! Maisie’s soaked, through and through! “Fish and chips?” calls Tim, so cheeky. “I am so happy!” says Poppy “so happy!” “Seaweed for Alice!” says Brett “So freaky!” “No! No!!” the teacher shouts - “DO NOT do that!” she says to Brett. “Pull it out at once!” she says - “Down her back, so cold and wet!” “I’m bored, so bored!” said Karl - “Skim a stone across the waves.” Says Brett now sitting on the sand, “Such a pity there’s no caves.” “What is that?” shouts Brett so loud - “Lying there! - Upon the sand!” “Miss, oh Miss, come and see!” Around they gather, around they stand. Among the pebbles on the beach, An object shining in the sun; Awesome it is, they all agree, A peculiar pattern, second to none. In his hand he grasps the stone, And holds it up for all to see; “Look at this!” he loudly shouts, “So stunning, Miss!” he says with glee. So heavy so dense, it feels so smooth, Around its surface he runs his finger - Across the spots and streaks so fine, He smiles as now he lets it linger. “A fossil coral, so old it is, Siphonodendron is its name; In mud it lived.” the teacher says, She smiles at Brett, who revels in fame! “In seas so warm and full of life - Three-hundred million years ago It grew and grew till smothered by mud And mud did choke, and death bestow.” “A fossil now as Ice Age dawned By sheets of ice ‘twas torn away; in boulder clay transported far, And dumped in cliffs in Hornsea Bay.” Brett, is now so happy, so happy, Shows Poppy, his find, so stunning and splendid; “Time to go!” calls teacher so whacked, All so sad the day has ended...... 24 October 2020 Footnote: Hornsea is a small sea-side town on the coast of East Yorkshire in an area called Holderness. The poems was written for the school (top primary age-group) following a talk on fossils. The happenings are entirely fictitious! The fossils (at Hornsea) are erratics. In other words, they do not come from the actual deposits that they are found in. In fact, they were brought down during the last ice age, dragged from the north trapped in giant ice sheets and dumped along the Holderness Coastline. You can find almost anything from the Jurassic and Cretaceous rocks of Yorkshire and also a number of Carboniferous rocks. Fossils include ammonites, belemnites, echinoids, corals and molluscs (which are the most common), but you can also find reptile remains if you are luckily. While this makes it more exciting, you can never fully date these fossils, as it is impossible to tell exactly what bed they originally came from. (Alister Cruikshanks - UK Fossils Network)
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