About Rachel Rooney

Among Rachel Rooney’s poems you’ll find riddles and puzzles, strange stories, characters from fairy tales – and some very funny ideas. What if the Queen decided to swap places with an ordinary person? What if you could sell your own mum and buy another one? What if …

Rachel imagines the world through the eyes of a worm or a head louse or the clock on the classroom wall, and through the ears of a toddler or a child in the playground.

Most of all, she is interested in how words work. In her hands, words and letters come to life and have a kind of magic power. Some of her poems are about poetry itself –  or about poets, or people reading poems. A poem becomes something you can hold in your hand, something to fish from a stream  – or something to eat!

Rachel reads her poems with an ear to the sounds that the words make, helping us to hear the effect of the rhymes, the assonances and the alliteration. And listen to how she changes the mood of each stanza in ‘Russian Doll’.

Rachel uses a wide variety of poetic forms. Look out for: sonnets, shape poetry, a poem that sounds like a limerick and some rhyming couplets.

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Rachel Rooney was born in London. She was one of a large family of six children. She became a teacher and spent many years teaching children with special needs.

When she was a child, Rachel loved poetry and wrote lots of poems. But she never showed them to anyone and she stopped when she was in her teens. Many years later, she rediscovered her love of poetry and started writing again.

Rachel's recording was made for The Poetry Archive on 4 December 2012 at The Soundhouse and was produced by Anne Rosenfeld.

Featured in the Archive

Selected Bibliography

The Language of Cat, Macmillian, 2011

My Life as a Goldfish, Frances Lincoln, 2014

A Kid in my Class, Otter-Barry Books, 2018