Snake poem and download

Snakes are like rainbows–free download for educators.

My poem Snakes are like rainbows was first published in The School Magazine in April 2003.

At the time, I was a beginning teacher, and I was lying. I hated snakes. But I didn’t want to pass on my fear of one of nature’s creatures, so I challenged myself to think about snakes in a different way.

I was also thinking of my connection to Country—as a white woman living on stolen lands of the Kaurna people. Something I was super aware of, working with Nunga kids at the time.

Snakes […] has been published in The School Magazine several times now and appears in the Wakefield Press poetry anthology Tadpoles in the Torrens with two of my other poems. I’ve shipped it around to classrooms kind enough to let me visit. Giant snakes have been made. Snakes have been drawn in sand trays ( see: Montessori / I used Aboriginal Symbols), and snake stories have been played musically and represented in dance. Snakes have been revered. In my small radius, anyway. I feel this poem has earned its keep. For it to keep making rainbows, I’ve decided to take it out of hibernation once again:

Here’s my Snakes poem, downloadable for free (PDF).

—I’ve included a version with the US spelling of color for those who need it.

—There are some teaching notes and a couple of printables in the download.

—No email sign up is needed. You click on the prompt box, and a pdf appears. Magic.

If you’re a teacher, home educator or interested person, I hope you find the downloads useful.

A Snake Zine printable is on its way. You can follow this blog to hear when it pops up or keep your eye out for it.

Disclaimer: I still don’t love snakes. (They’re snakes.) My daughter, however, adores their scaly bums.


Here’s the poem’s 2016 incarnation in The School Magazine. I’ve since changed the em dash placement. *The image below is not for printing.* Go here to print the poem. Thanks so much.

The School Magazine, 2016

I live and write on Kaurna land. Always was, always will be. I pay my respects to Elders past, present and emerging.

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