Kirkus Reviews QR Code
A MIRROR TO NATURE by Jane Yolen

A MIRROR TO NATURE

Poems About Reflection

By Jane Yolen (Author) , Jason Stemple (Illustrator)

Age Range: 10 - 12

Pub Date: April 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-59078-624-6
Publisher: Wordsong/Boyds Mills

The title of this volume comes from Hamlet’s instructions to the players that the “purpose of playing” is to mirror nature. And so is the purpose of the nature photographer and poet here. Stemple has photographed reflections in nature: seven wood storks with seven reflections, an alligator with a reflection that creates the illusion of a double jaw, a solitary cockle made less alone by its reflection. Yolen’s brief poems personifying the animals face the full-page photographs like the reflections they describe. A note from the author encourages readers to let the photographs and poems be a cause for reflection, but the intended fun of the poems is, at times, undercut by the forced whimsy: “This perplexing little frog / Has popped up on a thrown-out bottle. / What does this mean? Perhaps a lotle.” The pages and photographs are vibrant and lively, the poems best for reading aloud. Italicized captions on each poem’s page add information about the pictured animal, making this a good volume—along with other titles by this mother-son team—for teachers wanting to connect science and poetry. (Poetry. 10-12)