Veteran poets tap into the never-ending interest in twins with a collection of poetry dedicated to twosomes.
Children’s poet laureate Lewis, a twin himself, and prolific children’s poet Yolen, the grandmother of twins, present 44 poems about twins. Readers will have to guess each poem’s originator, however, as none of the poems are signed. Divided into four sections comprising “Twins in the Waiting Womb,” “Twinfants,” “How to Be One” (about childhood with a twin) and “Famous Twins,” the poems explore milestones as twins, the push and pull of twin relationships and the need for individuality. Although some of the poems just reach mediocre, others are positively endearing (“Good night, / Good night. / The single moon / Shines down. / And soon / One sleep / You’ll share”). Readers will enjoy dipping into the book and savoring a few poems at a time rather than reading the book in its entirety, as taken altogether, the prevailing rhythmic rhyme can become monotonous. Intermittent twin facts run along the bottom, while Blackall, illustrator of another popular pair, Ivy + Bean, enhances the collection with a variety of twin sets in her signature patterned illustrations, rendered in watercolor, pencil and painted paper collage. Children may muse at the twin depictions, but the real consumers will be the proud caregivers of twins.