A collection of poetic sentences invites listeners to observe, celebrate, and sometimes follow natural environments in specific ways.
“Make the EARTH your companion. Walk lightly on it, as other creatures do.” Here, graceful and elegant stylized forms of several familiar animals (rhinoceros, seal, elephant, tiger, horse) prance across the rounded edge of the planet against a deep red-orange sky. A double-page spread illustrating “Learn from the SEA how to face harsh forces” shows a sailing vessel like Odysseus’ traversing dark waves under which a variety of teaming and slightly menacing sea creatures gathers. The colors throughout are intriguingly unusual, characterized by subdued hues: reds, purples, and grays. The solemn tone gives way to whimsy with this nod to lightheartedness: “Save some small piece of GRASSLAND for a red kite on a windy day,” as a young white girl is carried aloft by a flying red heart. Some openings work better than others. Unlike the pages before it, “See the ICECAPS glisten with crystalline majesty” offers little more than what is stated. Human figures throughout are abstract and diminutive. Facial features are indistinct, so the use of white silhouettes seems to imply that many to most of the humans depicted are white.
Distinctive and occasionally elegant, this might encourage children to offer their own meditations on how the natural world informs ways to live. (Picture book. 3-7)