Henry the emu that could fly

Written by Niraj Lal

"Niraj is a gifted writer of children's stories...this is Isaac Newton's story of the apple falling on his head re-written. Great for all ages!"

- Sir Richard Friend, Cavendish Professor of Physics, University of Cambridge

"Simply stunning...such a joy to listen to."

- Deborah Leavitt, Manager of ABC Radio National.

Illustration by Garance Monfort

currently in submission for publication...

Butterfly Flo and the Everything Effect

Written by Niraj Lal, Illustrated by Garance Monfort

"...a charming moral tale in the classic traditions of children's stories."

- Sir Richard Friend, Cavendish Professor of Physics, University of Cambridge

Front cover

Jacket cover


Flo is also available in French and German!
Please contact us if you'd like any further information: pilularis@gmail.com

Henry the emu that could fly

The first chapter...

Act One

In which Henry attempts different methods to fly

Henry the emu wanted to fly,
He’d been trying since he was two.
But flap as he might, his wings were too small.
He was sad, and depressed – he was blue.

His friends from the bush had tried helping him out,
There was Wayne (his best mate from next door),
‘Just jump off the ledge, flap your wings – you’ll be right!”
… Henry fell straight to the floor.

Old Bertie the brolga said ‘I’ve just the thing!’
And pulled from her shed some elastic,
‘A launcher!’ she cried, ‘will give you some spring!’
‘you’ll go far! it’ll be just fantastic!’

Further and tighter the rubber band stretched,
Some dingoes had joined in to help.
‘On my count’ Bertie said, ‘1, 2, 3 let it rip!’
And Henry shot off with a ‘ YeeeelllLP!’

The crowd gave a gasp as they witnessed the sight
Of an emu soar high through the air.
Henry was rapt! He was up! He was free!
Then his joy quickly turned to despair…

The arc was too flat, the landing was grim.
Henry’s legs buckled into his chest.
To make matters worse, he got forty-two stings
From crashing straight on an ants nest.

And so it continued the unlikely plight
Of a flightless bird trying to fly.
Henry cracked seven ribs, broke two wingbones, three toes,
In his unfortunate attempts at the sky.

He tried flying like gliders, high up in the trees,
To succeed with his uppermost wish.
He trained with galahs and with blowflies and bees,
He even swam with flying fish!

Then one morning Henry stopped with a sob,
‘It’s over!’ he cried, ‘I’m done.’
‘Flying emus? I’m kidding myself, I’m a joke.’
And blindly left home at a run.

Act Two

In which Henry meets Wallagoot Jean