Rainbow bags

a poem about growing up, and school. (yr 7= when your 11, in Britain that's when we go to a new school)


1. Rainbow bags

Pink bag, Blue bag, Green bag,

All picked up from the bag shop

In the rush before year 7 began

They brought excitement, as they represented

A brand-new adventure:

Big school.


Pink bag, blue bag, green bag

Worn over both shoulders

Overstuffed full of brand new stationary

Their florescent colouring lighting the way up to school

Chatter and laughter

As new friends are made

And all the bags are placed in a line:

Pink, then blue, then green.


Pink bag, blue bag, green bag

Badges pinned onto them

Becoming time stamps

Marking where they’ve been

Filled with crumpled scrap paper from long ago

Colours fading

Stationary is scarce

Maybe just an odd pencil found on the floor

Threads fraying as stress subconsciously picks at them.


Pink bag, blue bag, green bag

Stuffed full of revision notes

Preparation for the bombardment of the never-ending tests

Thrown down at the end of a school day

Everybody else has moved onto handbags and makeup

Bags’ falling apart along with the owners’ sanity,


Black bag, black bag, black bag

Rainbow bags discarded

For something more uniformed 

more professional said parents

no need for creativity, just do well in tests

and life will be sorted out for you.


Pink bag, blue bag, green bag

a reminder of when everything was exciting and brand new

when school was an adventure

when they were the three musketeers

just them against the rest world

now, they’re colourless pieces of fabric

tucked up on a shelf

stuffed full of memories.


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