Roald Dahl’s Long Lost Poem

From his medical advancements, to his classic tales, we’ve covered all things Roald Dahl. Once again, the late poetic master has graced us with more from his wonderful mind.

A boys’ primary class from a school called Primate Dixon Primary School in Coalisland wrote Dahl a letter after finishing one of his books, Danny, the Champion of the World. The Irish News said, the letter “was addressed to teacher James Maye and his class and Dahl’s poem contrasted the Tyrone schoolteacher’s approach to that of his own.” The letter was then placed in a desk and hasn’t been seen until now. 

Here’s The Irish News‘ tweet [note the illustration at the bottom]:


A Poem in Reply to Schoolchildren

My teacher loved using the cane.

He would thrash me again and again.

I’d be raised in the air

By the roots of my hair

While he shouted, ‘It’s good for the brain!’

I used to wear pants extra thick

To lessen the sting from his stick,

When he saw what I’d done,

He yelled, ‘This is no fun!

Take them off altogether and quick!’

From your letters to me it would seem

That your teacher is clearly a dream.

There’s no whacks on the bum

When you can’t do a sum,

Instead you get strawberries and cream.


The school’s principal, Sean Dillon, told BBC, “It wasn’t until 2012 that our vice principal Siobhan Murphy was clearing out an old desk, an old desk that could easily have been thrown out, and came across the letter.”

The poem was put on display at the school on September 13th to mark Dahl’s 100th birthday. 



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