Writing Fun with Turkey on the Run

by Eric Ode

It’s the holiday season, and that means family, friends,! In anticipation of the festivities, have your students create a new verse for Eric Ode’s silly song “Turkey on the Run,” the turkey dinner misadventure found in Ode’s new book of cowboy poetry for kids, Tall Tales of the Wild West (And a Few Short Ones). During school visits, authors Ode and Bruce Lansky have had students expand on the story with some wacky results.

Here’s a verse written by a group of third graders, as guided by Lansky during a recent school visit:


Next I grabbed a female turkey decoy, pretty as a rose,
And I dressed her really nicely, and she made a pretty pose.
She attracted the male turkey with her pretty little toes.
When I tried to shoot the turkey—hit the decoy on the nose.

You may wish to begin with a brainstorming pre-write, creating a list of possible “turkey escapes.” Notice that the above completed verse came out as an AAAA rhyme pattern. An AABB rhyme pattern may be easier for many students to create.

Dig in!

© 2007 Eric Ode

Permission is given for individual school classes to use this lesson and to make as many copies of the lesson as are needed for the students’ use. All other reproduction is prohibited under penalty of law. For use outside individual classes, please e-mail

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