Today is the last day for me to share poetry picture books and I saved a good one just for this.
This has been a long and rough month for many of us. Who could have imagined that the world would find itself in this situation? Not I! I know it weighs on many of us, so I hope you’ve found some solace, some entertainment, and some soulful bliss in the poems I’ve shared this month.
I debated on ending on a funny note, but the other book I was considering highlighting seemed a bit too macabre for what’s going on in the world right now. Instead, I thought I’d end with a beautiful anthology that surprised me.
“One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance” isn’t in fact a picture book. It’s 128 pages long, BUT it has poems from some of my favorite poets AND it has illustrations throughout by a multitude of different illustrators. SO I’m cheating and including it here.
Nikki Grimes has also done something I haven’t seen before: she uses those Harlem poets as inspiration for writing a new poem using the Golden Shovel form. Yay for new-to-me poetry forms!
But perhaps you’ve never heard of the Golden Shovel form either? I will let Nikki explain this then so you can understand just how brilliant her poem is (and how beautiful the illustration that goes with it). Forgive me if this is picture heavy, but I want to explain the form, and give attribution to all involved in this creation.
SO, she took a line from this poem (the one that is in bold):
And she wrote those words into the end lines (also in bold) in this poem:
God I love that! Isn’t that beautiful? And if feels SO appropriate for what’s going on in the world right now.: “Dream-killers daily stalk the streets.” Protect your dreams!
BUT wait, there’s more! THEN an illustrator was given the chance to illustrate that same poem. This is the picture that went with it (and I love this too):
Isn’t it glorious? Look at that child walking down the street and dreaming. This picture feels SO real! And I must give attribution to the illustrator:
Dear readers, IF this tiny glimpse into the book catches your fancy, I hope you will track down a copy to read. AND I hope I will see you again next year as I plan to continue this blog tradition. Until next year, or until the next blog, I hope you will all stay safe and “wrap your dreams in a silken cloth.”
And if you’re looking for more poetry fun this month, be sure to check out the Kidlitosphere Event Roundup!