CONSIDER THE LEMMING by Jeanne Steig
Kirkus Star

CONSIDER THE LEMMING

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Twenty-five rib-tickling, neatly phrased poems about animals, plus a final dividend of a three-letter verbal/visual pun, with all the appeal of Odgen Nash at his best--philosophical and funny. Many of the impeccably cadenced lines will mean most to adults (if the pig could ""spend a week in Cannes or Florence,/Would we still hold him in abhorrence?"" or ""the mockingbird?/Ofttimes at 3 a.m. he'll start/To pour his imitative heart/Into the wakeful, ravished ear/And sing for hours with monstrous cheer/Cacophonies that he collects, /And comic-opera side effects""). But there's plenty here for middle grades and even younger children: ""The skin of the rhino is thick,/Yet he trembles at insects that prick. /So he wallows in mud/When the river's at flood--/A sloppy but sensible trick."" There are limericks here that may prove immortal, and large, luscious words in inspired combinations. The black-and-white illustrations are quietly funny, beautifully drawn, a perfect accompaniment. A treasure to share--again and again.

Pub Date: May 27th, 1988
Page count: 48pp
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Giroux