Friday, March 21, 2008

Poetry Corner

National Poetry Month is April, just around the corner, so we at the library are busy preparing our Poetry Safari (a kind of poetry scavenger hunt) and receiving lots of new poetry books. The publishers know when to get those new ones out so we can use them while we're still excited about them.

First, I want to mention an oldie by goodie that I finally sat down and looked at today for the first time, Pocket Poems by Bobbi Katz. Teachers I know have raved about this little gem of a poetry book for a long time, but I just picked it up today (finally!). The concept centers around the titular poem by Bobbi Katz that begins,

With a poem in your pocket
a pocket in your pants
you can rock with new rhythms.
You can skip.
You can dance.

Each of the poems in this anthology is short enough to carry in your pocket on a small piece of paper. This is a perfect introduction to poetry and would be fun to use with kids in a classroom. Some schools have been embracing Poem in Your Pocket Day, so this is an obvious choice for that as well. Another example from the book, the limerick "Maggies Dog", on page 23, comes from an anonymous poet:

There was a young girl called Maggy.
Whose dog was enormous and shaggy.
The front end of him
Looked vicious and grim,
But the tail end was friendly and waggy.

My favorite poetry collection from 2007 was Here's a Little Poem, edited by Jane Yolen. This one received raves all around the kid lit community and is a perfect first poetry book for toddlers and other little ones. This one makes a perfect baby gift too! Illustrated by Polly Dunbar in her happy, colorful style, and with text in a variety of fonts and colors, poems are not at all intimidating.

Jack Prelutsky, our poet laureate, has a new collection of funny, silly poems, My Dog May Be a Genius. My co-workers and I had a riot reading them aloud to each other. This is definitely a worthy addition to his canon. How does this genius keep coming up with all this good stuff? I especially love his poem "I Have a Lamb" from page 115:
I have a lamb
that loves to dance,
it dances every day,
and every time
it has a chance,
it practices baaaaa-let.

Hee hee! How can you not get the giggles?

A really cool and different poetry book that is new this year is called A Crossing of Zebras: Animal Packs in Poetry by Marjorie Maddox. This one is for an older audience and uses a variety of poetic styles to introduce packs on animals. Poems address such groups as a tower of giraffes, a murder of crows, a leap of leopards, and a charm of butterflies. The author's note at the end explains to readers the origins of these fun and descriptive terms and assures us that they are very real.

Enjoy some old or new poetry books today or wait until April, if you must.


TV Digital said...
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Mina24 said...

A Great Blog!
Hope to see you back in action.