Friday, March 16, 2012

Poetry Friday - A Review of Ivy in Bloom: The Poetry of Spring

In just a few days, spring will officially have arrived. Of course, you may still be experiencing cold weather on the day, but at least you can start thinking about spring, and anticipating the warmer weather, the opening flowers, and the little leaves budding out on the trees.

Today's poetry book uses a very unique format to describe the experiences of one little girl who very much wants spring to arrive.

Vanita Oelschlager
Illustrated by Kristin Blackwood
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 7 to 10
Vanita Books, 2009, 978-0-9800162-7-7
It is a cold day in March, and Ivy Van Allsberg is wishing that spring would make an appearance. She is tired of “piercing” winter winds, “heavy and gray” clouds, and frost covered fountains. In vain she looks here and there for signs of spring.
   Then, at last, spring begins to send up shoots that are green and full of life. April brings showers and snowmelt, and flowers are encouraged to bloom. Little birds sing, Ivy’s heart “dances” like golden yellow daffodils, and “all’s right with the world!”
   In this unique picture book, Vanita Oelschlager combines her own poetry with sections of poetry written by Longfellow, Charles Dickens, e.e. cummings, Walt Whitman, Robert Frost, and others. The resulting poetical picture is as fresh and exciting as spring itself.
   In the back of the book, the text is presented in full, showing readers how the opening section, written by Vanita, shifts into the section of the narrative that uses words written by “Great Poets and Writers of the Past.” Here readers can see excerpts of the poems that Vanita used.

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