MERLIN AND THE SNAKE'S EGG by Leslie Norris

MERLIN AND THE SNAKE'S EGG

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KIRKUS REVIEW

These 27 short verses by a Welsh poet deal smoothly and accessibly with nature, dogs, and fairy tale themes, though not always at the same level. (""Buying a Puppy,"" about a seven-year-old's birthday surprise, is the youngest of all, whereas ""The Park at Evening,"" the best of the batch, expresses an adult's view of children playing.) Though the publishers see in the collection ""new ways of looking at the old world,"" and Norris does seem true in intent to this view of poetry, the chief weakness here is that his actual examples--about personified seasons, singing trees, the tree in the seed, a fossil fern, Christmas animals, etc.--too often project their subjects in basically conventional ways. But, though sometimes unoriginal in concept, they are never cliched, and Norris' lines flow with a gratifying, natural ease. Also, happily, Ted Lewin's soft, quietly charged black-and-white illustrations set an appropriate receptive mood.

Pub Date: April 3rd, 1978
Publisher: Viking