You may have felt a spring in your step over the past few days. Not just because it’s officially spring, but because it’s poetry month! Some of you may share my cynicism about these designated “months.” Can’t we enjoy poetry all year? Do we just value the contributions of women in March? That being said, if the fact of “National Poetry Month” introduces a young reader to Jack Prelutsky or Doug Florian, it can’t be a bad thing. Maybe….a young reader will open a book by Naomi Shihab Nye in May!
There are so many good poetry books for children – funny poems, spooky poems, animal poems…the list goes on! Below is a list of five poetry books published in the past year that are on my growing list of favorites:
Water Sings Blue: Ocean Poems by Kate Coombs and illustrated by Meilo So (This is just an extraordinarily beautiful book. It makes you want to pack a beach bag and head to the seashore.)
World Rat Day: Poems About Real Holidays You’ve Never Heard Of edited by J. Patrick Lewis (Rat Day is April 4, by the way. That’s two days from now. Are you ready? As a native Ohioan, I’m looking forward to Ohio Sheep Day on July 14!)
National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry by J. Patrick Lewis (Two books edited by J. Patrick Lewis – and I could list many others from years past. All kinds of poems about all kinds of animals. An animal lover’s dream book!)
Forest Has a Song by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater (A first collection -with such a beautiful cover by Robbin Gourley. My favorite poem in this book is about a baby owl nervous about his first solo flight.)
Pugs and Other Poems by Valerie Worth (a posthumous collection of animal poems by Valerie Worth. I often judge books by the cover which made this book a must-have!)
And finally….a poem in honor of the sometimes under-appreciated thesaurus – written by one of Inly’s Middle School students.
Happy National Poetry Month!
Is thick with knowledge,
Yet looks young for his age.
He sits in the corner
No one bothers to start a conversation with him,
And he returns the favor.
The few people he bothers to talk to,
And bother to talk to him,
Are Dr. Phil Dictionary and Dr. Louis Novel.
Dr. Thesaurus is known as a sage,
Old and wise.
Yet no one bothers to ask him for advice.
He is original and openminded,
Can think outside and inside of the box.
Still no person asks for advice.
Dr. Phil Dictionary and Dr. Louis Novel are his only knowledgeable co-workers,
Although they can be quite irritating,
From “Dictionary, you know nothing compared to me!” to
“Oh yeah? I have way more interesting facts than you do!!!”
When in reality they both contain useful information.
One morning Dr. Thesaurus woke up to yelling,
His co-workers were going at it again.
They yelled “I’m so smart compared to you!”
And “I can’t believe you would disrespect me like that!”
They argued like they usually did,
Yet neither of them asked for help.
Dr. Thesaurus sat and watched,
He waited for them,
Not one of them asked for help.
He thinks to himself.
In his corner of the room,
Where no one bothers to consult him.
They both contain useful information,
Yet they both lack the common senses to consult the old sage.
He can think of many ways to resolve this issue,
Yet he sat still and waits.