Today’s poetry picture book features a cooking poem.
SALSA is a poetry picture book that refers to itself as a cooking poem (and not the first picture book like this written by Jorge Argueta–there appear to be a series of them). It explores the history and ingredients of what makes Salsa with music, dancing, and cooking. Yet in this case, it focuses on a specific voice telling the poem: a young boy and his sister who are gathering the ingredients.
It is also told in both Spanish and English. I admit I love seeing bilingual texts like this. I studied Spanish in high school and a bit in college so I love the way the sounds roll around the tongue. I also love hearing the original sounds (even if I don’t understand them all any more) and comparing them to the English translations. Sometimes there are differences I can spot and I always like to know what the original text said. Yes, I’m also one of those weird people that like to watch foreign films (from time to time) in the original language with subtitles on, so I can hear the original voice inflections.
The illustrations by Duncan Tonatiuh are a delight. Apparently these two creators have not always paired up for these cooking poem books though. It appears that Argueta writes them and a variety of hispanic illustrators have helped to illustrate each book. But Tonatiuh’s work here in this book helps to bring this story to life. It’s a fantastic combination of many different things.
I share one of my favorite passages from the book:
And if you’re looking for more poetry fun this month, be sure to check out the Kidlitosphere Event Roundup!