Friday, June 10, 2011

Poetry Friday - A review of Days like this

I really enjoy reading a collection of poems that have a common theme but that were written by different people. You get such an interesting diversity of voices and styles as you turn the pages. Today's Poetry Friday title is just such a book. All the poems are relatively short, and they all describe some aspect of childhood days. Simon Jame's illustrations further tie the poems together with their images of children going about doing what children do. 

Illustrator:  Simon James
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 5 and up
Candlewick Press, 2005, 978-0763623142
Childhood is full of small adventures of all kinds, and this collection of poems by Simon James, Charlotte Zolotow, Ogden Nash and others, is a tribute to those adventures, to those little moments that come together to fill up a child's days.
   For example there is that ramble that three little children take with their dad when they have to walk "across on stepping stones" to cross a river. There is the family picnic on the beach, and the little boy remembers how they didn't wear any hats or shoes or socks, and that he dropped his jelly sandwich in the sand. In addition, there is a boy talking about his first day at school, which was so uninspiring that he says that "I don't think I'll do back."
   In this collection, Simon James has truly captured the essence of happy childhood times with his funny, sweet, and evocative watercolor and ink illustrations. He shows children in happy moments, quiet moments, thoughtful moments, loving moments, and so much more. This is truly a collection for readers of all ages, a collection that will continue to have meaning even as the readers grow up and move on.

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