An absorbing poem to night speaks to the acuity of hearing that comes when a blanket of darkness falls across the landscape....

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IN THE HUSH OF THE EVENING

An absorbing poem to night speaks to the acuity of hearing that comes when a blanket of darkness falls across the landscape. All the sounds that closed eyes conjure are heard here--a whippoorwill in a tree, the ""breep, breep"" of garden crickets, a bat's wings swishing past the window screen, even the ""pip, pip"" of an attic mouse on the prowl. A boy at bedtime does not miss a single utterance from his reverential night vigil at the window sill. Raccoons rattle the lids of garbage cans, a church bell tolls, and an owl whispers, ""Who's there?"" ""I am"" answers the boy, in his effort to be a part of nature's nocturnal symphony. Karas chooses a dark palette--which grows darker as night descends--for his tilted forms and shapes, while the boy's connection to nature is depicted with subtle reminders of his presence--a cork boat with a toothpick mast and sugar-packet sail floats near ""the lip of the pond,"" where the bullfrogs sing; an empty jar and net form a statue in a blinking field of fireflies. Children worded by night noises may find a comforting antidote in the whispered lines of poetry, but the softly-lit images will also dispel the shadows of the imagination.

Pub Date: May 31, 1998

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1998