This is David McCord's third collection of verses with the subtitle, ""Rhymes of the Never Was and Always Is."" This is one of those vague, all purpose phrases that allows the poet to include everything he wants. Just so with this collection: the poems are uneven in age level, in quality and in type; there is even a bit of prose. The collection might have benefited from sectioning. But this is quibbling, because there are a number of successful poems. Some of the best are the nonsense poems; Mr. McCord plays perfectly to the young child's ready sense of the ridiculous in such potential favorites as ""Corinner,"" ""Ptarmigan,"" and ""Singular Indeed."" The poet is less successful when he deals with a more sophisticated level of nonsense with an awkward imbalance of seriousness and humor. A few of the poems are not children's poems at all, but reflections from the adult viewpoint, as in ""Walnut Tree."" Then, there are a few totally serious poems that are excellent--""Elm Seed Blizzard"" is one to check. Yet another type of poem is the short narrative, and here Mr. McCord's rapport with nonsense enters in; these are among his best. Adults using this will have to pick and choose among the types and age levels, but the great plus of this collection is Mr. McCord's facility with a variety of verse forms. Some will come as a challenge to the younger ear, and this in itself is of great value.