Since April is poetry month, I thought I'd share some of the poetry books we think are worth keeping on our shelves. I just realized that my fluorescent orange copy of Chief Modern Poets of Britain and America is missing from this photo, as is Leaves of Grass. Those are in with the classic literature in the study, but for some reason Antonia Fraser's Scottish Love Poems is on with a shelf of mostly kid-friendly titles!
For learning about poetry, we have Michael Clay Thompson's Music of the Hemispheres and Building Poems from Royal Fireworks Press, as well as Knock at a Star, by X.J. Kennedy and Dorothy M. Kennedy. I also have a copy of Rose, Where Did You Get that Red? by Kenneth Koch, which must be out on loan (or is in another stack or on another shelf somewhere in this house that is full of what I like to call décor des livres when I'm not complaining about a house stuck in the "late grad school" period). I give all four my highest recommendation for teaching kids from about grades 3-8.
Some favorite anthologies include Helen Ferris's Favorite Poems Old and New and A Journey through Time in Verse and Rhyme, edited by Heather Thomas. We've begun many a fine day of learning at home with poems from these two books.
No children's book collection is complete without at least some Shel Silverstein! That copy of Where the Sidewalk Ends is my own well-loved copy from thirty-some years ago. And another childhood favorite of mine that I bought just after Jazz was born is The World of Christopher Robin, which has both A.A. Milne volumes of poetry: When We Were Very Young, and Now We Are Six.
My eldest child knows me very well, and his thoughtful gift last Mother's Day was Haiku: An Anthology of Japanese Poems, edited by Stephen Addiss. Highly recommended.
Children's book illustrator Susan Jeffers has illustrated at least a couple of books based on famous poems, including Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, by Robert Frost, and Hiawatha, by Henry Longfellow. Her fairy tales are not to be missed, too!
For more picture books, try Jane Yolen's Ring of Earth (a gorgeous book of poetry about the seasons) and Caroline Kennedy's collection, A Family of Poems. Missing from the photo above are two of our very favorite poetry books, which are off the shelf because they've been in use quite a bit this month: Talking Like the Rain (short poems for young children illustrated by Jane Dyer), Poetry by Heart, edited by Liz Attenborough. We also like the Poetry for Young People series, which has over twenty titles which are still in print and widely available.
Book Sharing Monday is hosted by Canadian Home Learning. Hop on over and join the fun!