Review of Caminar

brown_caminar

Caminar by Skila Brown Middle School    Candlewick    200 pp. 3/14    978-0-7636-6516-6    $15.99 “Forest sounds / all around / but on the ground / the sound / of Me / grew. Echoed. / I heard a path I could not see.” Exquisitely crafted poems are the basis of an unusually fine verse novel set in 1981, in […]

Five questions for Marilyn Nelson

Marilyn Nelson

Marilyn Nelson is an acclaimed author and poet whose numerous contributions to children’s and young adult literature include Carver: A Life in Poems (Front, 13–16 years); A Wreath for Emmett Till (illus. by Philippe Lardy; Houghton, 13–16 years); and Freedom Business: Including a Narrative of the Life & Adventures of Venture, a Native of Africa […]

Review of How I Discovered Poetry

nelson_how i discovered poetry

How I Discovered Poetry by Marilyn Nelson; 
illus. by Hadley Hooper Middle School    Dial    103 pp. 1/14    978-0-8037-3304-6    $16.99    g In fifty poems (some previously published) Nelson chronicles her formative years during the 1950s, from age four to thirteen, against the backdrop of the cold war and stirrings of the civil rights movement and women’s […]

Rapunzel

It begins with dissatisfaction. Over, of all things, rapunzel. The herb, the seasoning. Not the beautiful Rapunzel. A pregnant wife (at last!), a witch’s garden next door. The missus just has to have some rapunzel. Of course the husband gets caught. The witch curses him as he stands there with a handful of pungent rapunzel. […]

New poetry booklist

Stardines Swim Across the Sky

In honor of National Poetry Month, we’ve compiled a list of poetry books for a wide range of ages, all recently published and recommended by The Horn Book Magazine. There’s something for everyone: anthologies and verse narratives; silly poetry and serious poetry; love poems and lullabies; free verse, formal verse, and brand-new verse forms. What […]

“Because poetry and hums aren’t things which you get, they’re things which get you”*

Lullaby (For a Black Mother) by Langston Hughes

*from The House at Pooh Corner Poetry can be used to examine and celebrate the world we live in and the worlds we invent. A great way to observe National Poetry Month is to share the following exemplary poetry books for young children featuring the calming rhythms of lullaby, the humorous juxtaposition of portmanteaux, the […]

Review of Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems

Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems by Marilyn Singer

Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems by Marilyn Singer; 
illus. by Josée Masse Primary    Dial    32 pp. 2/13    978-0-8037-3769-3    $16.99    g “It’s not easy,” warns Singer in a note about the “reverso,” a verse form she created and first used in Mirror Mirror (rev. 3/10); and the first poem (“Fairy Tales”) in this companion […]

Leave Your Sleep: Natalie Merchant on Childhood

Leave Your Sleep

While marketed as a two-volume music CD with an accompanying booklet, Natalie Merchant’s Leave Your Sleep might be better understood as a fascinating anthology of children’s poetry accompanied by biographical notes and two CDs on which each of the twenty-six poems is set to music. But it is even more than that. Leave Your Sleep […]

Down in the Bottom of the Bottom of the Box

Down in the Bottom of the Bottom of the Box

From down in the bottom of the Horn Book boxes comes JonArno Lawson’s newest paperback collection of children’s poetry from Canadian publisher The Porcupine’s Quill. Down in the Bottom of the Bottom of the Box (September 2012), a compilation of poems culled from one of Lawson’s earlier projects for falling outside its narrative scope, features […]

Ye olde children’s poetry

Fleas, Flies, and Friars by Nicholas Orme

Belt up your kirtles and hold onto your snoods. Fleas, Flies, and Friars: Children’s Poetry from the Middle Ages by Nicholas Orme (Cornell University Press, May 2012) presents a variety of verse from days of yore. After a brief context-setting chapter (“Children’s Poetry from the Middle Ages”), Orme provides sections on “Growing Up,” “Words, Rhymes, […]