At the End of the Day

At the end of the day Mr Joshua calls me over to his desk,
Hey, Nate
I just wanted to say that poem you wrote was beautiful
there was something about it that just grabbed me
made me feel something, you know?
And that’s what the best writing does, Nate
it’s the feels you’re looking for. 

He opens his drawer, you got a notebook
or anything that you keep ideas in?

I shake my head,
just a pile of old paper, Sir. 

He passes me a notebook
a proper posh little
hardbacked black one.

Here     he says             have this 
I keep one around like I used to in the bands,
you’ve got to grab those ideas when they come
or else they’re gone forever you know?
And he waves his hand above his head
tryna grab summat that in’t there. 

No one used to tell me to write my ideas down
Nate      but they were just there knocking on the
inside of my head until I did –
just like the poet in the video
and you          I think you have the flow
you have to grab that pen, Nate
let it all go. 

He spins round in his chair
and types summat into Google, 

Now look at this
these are David Almond’s
they’re on display up in the North East
see all those mad swirls of words and pictures? 

If you’ve got in in you      Nate
which I’m pretty certain you do
it’s what you can do too.

And he spins back round to look at me
proper kind look in his eyes, 

It helps you process the world,    you know?
All that heavy stuff we have to carry.
Then he glances at his watch,
Oooooops       staff meeting
I’ve got to go Nate        see you tomorrow.

© Matt Goodfellow, from The Final Year (Otter-Barry Books, 2023)

from The Final Year
by Matt Goodfellow
(Otter-Barry Books, 2023)

Matt Goodfellow

Matt Goodfellow trained as a primary school teacher and still works part-time in schools in addition to his highly popular, high-energy performances and workshops. He is particularly concerned to write verse for children in a way which effortlessly combines learning, confidence and entertainment for young readers. He lives in Manchester.