The sea’s a big laundry that’s pounding away -
And it's cleaning the world in a wonderful way.
It washes the fishes, it cleanses the rocks
And I’m sure the sea wouldn’t mind doing my socks.
It cleans all the sea shells; then leaves them to dry
On a sandy gold seashore beneath a blue sky,
There's one thing for certain and I know this is true:
These shells will be found by small children like you.
Then look on the seashore. What else can you find?
Those rollers have left lots of washed things behind.
Perhaps you’ll find pebbles left there on the sand:
Go on, pick them up. Feel them hard in your hand.
They’re such pretty colours and as smooth as can be,
And they’ve travelled our world in that salty old sea.
As well as the pebbles, you may find a shell.
In the sea are lots more where small sea creatures dwell.
Put a shell near your ear. Oh, now what can you hear?
It’s the sound of the ocean, that’s perfectly clear!
What you hear is, in fact, not the sound of the sea -
But the noise all around you that echoes, you see.
You may find a rock pool with sea creatures there.
Don't poke them or prod them - that wouldn't be fair!
It’s a pity they can’t tell us of all that they’ve seen
In the ocean’s big laundry that’s washed them so clean.
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* This is one of the most popular of my poems with teachers and schools. I hope your children like it.