Students may not be convinced these are real poems, but they’ll enjoy creating them anyway, whatever they are.

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THE ARROW FINDS ITS MARK

Found poems can be found right here in a small anthology of original poems.

Found poems are exactly what their name implies: poems created out of words and phrases found in all sorts of places—on Facebook, in a thesaurus, in newspaper advertisements in magazines, on detergent boxes and signs in a hardware store. But, as the introduction cautions, “If you put a frame around any text and insert line breaks and stanzas—it won’t necessarily be a poem.” It takes vision to see the potential of poetry all around us, and then it takes magic to elevate and deepen the language. The first lines of Heard’s opening poem, “Find a Poem,” define the finding poet’s process: “come across / chance upon / stumble on / discover / turn up / bring to light.” Aimed at young readers, with an eye to helping them learn to write their own found poems, the collection will be a handy guide to an accessible form. Not so easy will be getting students to understand what makes these poetry, and a bit of elaboration in the introduction would have helped make the case. But certainly in the spirit of helping young people play with language, this will be a welcome addition to every teacher’s writing toolbox.

Students may not be convinced these are real poems, but they’ll enjoy creating them anyway, whatever they are. (Poetry. 8-12)

Pub Date: March 27, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-59643-665-7

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Roaring Brook

Review Posted Online: Jan. 4, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2012

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AT THE SEA FLOOR CAFÉ

ODD OCEAN CRITTER POEMS

From snapping shrimp with bubble-shooting claws to the Osedax worm that digests whalebones on the ocean floor, intriguing and unusual sea creatures are introduced in this collection of 18 engaging poems written in a variety of forms. A paragraph or two of identification and explanation follow each poem. This attractive small volume is illustrated with hand-colored linoleum block prints set on a blue-green background that darkens page by page as the reader descends. “Dive In!” introduces the habitat, and, on the last page, “Hooray for the Sea and the ROV” celebrates the ocean and the vehicles humans use to explore its deepest parts. One piece calls for two voices, a leopard sea cucumber and an emperor shrimp. Shape poems introduce the violet snail and a swarm of krill. These poems lend themselves to reading aloud, and many are short and catchy enough to be easily memorized. Concluding with a helpful glossary, a clear explanation of the poetic forms that points out rhymes, patterns and beats, suggested further resources and acknowledgements, this is an ideal title for cross-curricular connections. This gathering of humorous poetry and fascinating facts should be welcomed as a companion to Bulion and Evans’ previous collaboration, Hey There, Stink Bug! (2006)—even the surprise among the school of krill on the endpapers will make readers smile. (Informational poetry. 8-12)

Pub Date: April 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-56145-565-2

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Peachtree

Review Posted Online: April 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2011

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ZOMBIES!

EVACUATE THE SCHOOL!

“He called on me. / My answer’s wrong. / Caught like a squirrel / on an open lawn. / Standing alone, / twiddling my paws, / frozen in place, / working my jaws. / I’d like to bolt, / but where? / I moan. / Could anyone / be more / alone?” Poet, educator and storyteller Holbrook returns with a collection of 41 poems about school worries and classroom problems. Here readers find substitutes and pop quizzes, bullies and homework storms. Nearly half of the poems have appeared in previous collections, but here the white space around each poem is filled with poetry facts, definitions and challenges to get young poets writing. Some entries are more successful than others; a few have odd rhymes, others a jangle in the rhythm. The title, too, is quite misleading: There is only one zombie poem. However, the subjects will resonate, and the hints and tips will excite young writers whether they currently love poetry or not. Sandstrom’s serviceable pen, ink and faded watercolor spot illustrations are as hit-and-miss as the poems. This is good classroom poetry, though, if not verse for the ages. (Poetry. 9-11)

 

 

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-59078-820-2

Page Count: 56

Publisher: Wordsong/Boyds Mills

Review Posted Online: June 15, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2010

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