A blog for kids (and their parents) who love books, words, and dreaming big...
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Monday, November 30, 2015

A lovely place to play...

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An excerpt:

     The attic was a lovely place to play. The large, round, colored pumpkins made beautiful chairs and tables. The red peppers and the onions dangled overhead. The hams and the venison hung in their paper wrappings, and all the bunches of dried herbs, the spicy herbs for cooking and the bitter herbs for medicine, gave the place a dusty-spicy smell.

     Often the wind howled outside with a cold and lonesome sound. But in the attic Laura and Mary played house with the squashes and the pumpkins, and everything was snug and cosy.

~ from Little House in the Big Woods,
written by Laura Ingalls Wilder

When I was growing up, I, too, thought our attic was a lovely place to play. We did not store food in our attic, however. Ours was filled instead with boxes and bags of all sizes. Each one contained cast-off, long-forgotten items. I loved poking through them, looking for "treasure". My mom also kept her guitar in our attic. I spent many a day sitting next to our attic window, watching dust particles floating through the sunshine and strumming on that guitar, making up little songs to go with the tune.

I was in elementary school when I first read the Little House books. I remember reading the passage above and thinking that the sight and smell of all those foods would make an attic even more wonderful to play in. The image has stuck with me ever since. Does Laura and Mary's attic sound like a place you would like to play in?

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Slow down...

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"For me poetry 
has always been a way of 
paying attention to the world.  
We hear so many voices every day, 
swirling around us, 
and a poem makes us 
slow down and listen carefully 
to a few things we have really heard, 
deep inside." 

~ Naomi Shihab Nye, 
in The Place My Words are Looking For

I like this description of poetry, "a way of paying attention to the world". Poems, whether I'm reading them or writing them, do cause me to slow down, examine the world around me, listen to it, and focus on things I might not even notice otherwise. Do you agree with Nye's words here? Why or why not?

Friday, November 27, 2015

Books fall open...

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Books fall open, you fall in,
delighted where you've never been.
Hear voices not once heard before,
reach world through world, 
through door on door;
find unexpected keys to things,
locked up beyond imaginings….
True books will venture, dare you out,
whisper secrets, maybe shout,
across the gloom to you in need,
who hanker for a book to read.

~ David McCord

It's only recently that I finally found this poem and read all of the lines I'm sharing here today. (I'm not sure that this is McCord's entire poem, however -- it seems to be only a part of it.) But I've known the first line of this poem for many, many years. I used to have a set of book plate stickers (now all lovingly stuck into the front covers of my favorite books) with an illustration from Mary Engelbreit and the quote "Books fall open, you fall in...." on them. I love falling into books! How about you?

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Thank You

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An excerpt:

     [...] My husband, John, leads the prayer, beginning with the words "O Lord, bless this food and the hands that prepared it." Since those hands are most often mine, I like that, but I know that it is not just my hands that brought this food to the table. There are the farmers, like my friends the Paquins; the grocer, like my friend Jim Taylor; and many more whose names and contributions I'll never know -- not to mention the sun, the rain, the good earth, and the plants and animals whose lives nourish my life.

     If I think of everything and everyone who helped bring a meal to my table, I am overwhelmed with gratitude. But that is good. Mister Eckhart, who died almost seven hundred years ago, said, "If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is 'thank you', it will be enough."

~ from Giving Thanks: 
Poems, Prayers, and 
Praise Songs of Thanksgiving,
edited and with reflections by Katherine Paterson

Today I am thankful for so many things: my family, my friends, my home, the food on my table, good books, time to write... the list goes on and on. I am also thankful for the opportunity to write this blog and for you, my readers. I hope that your own lists of blessings are as long as mine and I am wishing you all a wonderful, happy Thanksgiving! 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015


The word I want to share with you this week is myriad [mir-ee-uh d], a noun meaning "a countless or extremely great number of persons or things". (It can also specifically mean "ten thousand", a fact I didn't know before looking up the definition for this post!) Here are some sample sentences I wrote using the word:

I am thankful for a myriad of blessings.

I love to lie on the ground at night, 
gazing up at the myriad of stars shining above me.

My yard is covered with a myriad of colorful leaves.

How would you use myriad in a sentence?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


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The year has turned its circle,
The seasons come and go.
The harvest is all gathered in
And chilly north winds blow.
Orchards have shared their treasures,
The fields, their yellow grain.
So open wide the doorway-
Thanksgiving comes again!

~ Author unknown

I can't believe how quickly the year has flown by -- can you? Thanksgiving is almost here once more. Open wide that doorway and welcome it in! :)

Monday, November 23, 2015

Someplace to go...

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"Reading gives us 
someplace to go 
when we have to stay 
where we are." 

~ Mason Cooley

One of the things I love about reading is its ability to transport me to other towns, other countries, and other worlds -- while never actually leaving the comfort of my own home. (I love to travel in real life, as well. I just don't often have the means to do so.) What places have you enjoyed visiting through books? 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Voices in the reader's head...

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"Writing isn't just on the page; 
it's voices in the reader's head. 
Read what you write 
out loud to someone -- anyone -- 
and you will catch all kinds of things."  

~ Donna Jo Napoli

I agree with Napoli. Whenever I write something, I always go back later and read it aloud -- to myself, to our cockatiel, to my kids. I always learn more about my writing and discover more quickly what needs to be rewritten when I do this than I do when I read it silently to myself. Have you tried reading your work out loud? If so, did it help you with your writing?

Saturday, November 21, 2015

November Morning

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November Morning

A tingling, misty marvel
Blew hither in the night,
And now the little peach-trees
Are clasped in frozen light.

Upon the apple branches
An icy film is caught,
With trailing threads of gossamer
In pearly patterns wrought.

The autumn sun, in wonder,
Is gayly peering through
This silver tissued network
Across the frosty blue.

The weather vane is fire tipped,
The honeysuckle shows
A dazzling icy splendor,
And crystal is the rose.

Around the eaves are fringes
Of icicles that seem
To mock the summer rainbows
With many colored gleam.

Along the walk, the pebbles
Are each a precious stone;
The grass is tasseled hoarfrost,
The clover jewel sown.

Such sparkle, sparkle, sparkle
Fills all the frosty air,
Oh, can it be that darkness
Is ever anywhere!

~ Evaleen Stein

I like Stein's descriptions in this poem. They remind me of times when the world outside my window has glittered with ice or frost. I especially like the phrases "trailing threads of gossamer", "fringes/Of icicles", and "tasseled hoarfrost". Which words do you like best in this poem?

Friday, November 20, 2015

Talking Turkey: Books for Thanksgiving

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It's almost time for turkey! (Or ham or whatever it is that you like to eat on Thanksgiving Day. I know I'm especially looking forward to the pie!) I always like to get ready for holidays by reading books about them. Earlier this month I brought home a big stack of Thanksgiving books from our local library. I read through them all and picked out the ones that I enjoyed the most, shown below, to help you and your family get into the holiday spirit:

Picture Books:

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,
written and illustrated by Charles M. Schultz, 2002

This book is based on the animated television special A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving that first aired in 1973. I remember watching it every year as a young girl. In the story, Peppermint Patty invites herself and some other friends to Charlie Brown's home for Thanksgiving. Little does she know that the only things Charlie Brown can "cook" are cold cereal and toast. With the help of Linus, Snoopy, and Woodstock, he comes up with an unusual Thanksgiving dinner that the friends will never forget!

For me, celebrating with the Peanuts gang (whether in book or movie form) is a Thanksgiving tradition, both amusing and sweet.


The Great Thanksgiving Escape,
written and illustrated by Mark Fearing, 2014

Gavin is ready for another boring holiday with his relatives, but his cousin Rhonda has a different idea. "Sometimes," she tells him, "you have to make your own fun." Can they make it through the Hall of Aunts or the horde of zombie teenagers? Or will they be captured before they've had a taste of freedom?

Although I can't relate to the whole "boring holiday with relatives" premise (because spending Thanksgiving or any other day with a houseful of my relatives has always been something I look forward to), this story cracked me up! I especially love Fearing's hilarious illustrations.


Fat Chance Thanksgiving,
written by Patricia Lakin
and illustrated by Stacey Schuett, 2001

Carla and Mama move into their new apartment. Every day, Carla dreams of being just like the smiling Pilgrim girl in her favorite book, surrounded by family and friends at a big Thanksgiving feast. "Fat chance," Mama says. Their apartment is tiny, Mama doesn't have much money, and their loved ones live far away. "Let's be thankful for what we do have and not wish for the impossible." But Carla wants this so badly -- and she has an idea of how to make it work...

I found this to be a charming story. I particularly appreciated Carla's positive outlook on life and her determination to make her dream come true. 


A Thanksgiving Celebration,
written by Jackie French Koller
and illustrated by Marcia Sewall, 1999

According to the author's note at the back of this book, "Long before the first Pilgrim set foot in the New World, Native Americans were celebrating rites of thanksgiving [...]. Nickommah was the name given by the Narragansett Indian Tribe of present-day Rhode Island to these celebrations." This story describes such an observance. A glossary in the back provides definitions for the many Narragansett words used throughout the book.

Koller's poetic language and Sewall's richly-decorated illustrations combine to create a book both compelling and educational.


A Thanksgiving Wish,
written by Michael J. Rosen
and illustrated by John Thompson, 1999

Every Thanksgiving, Amanda's family has gathered at her grandmother Bubbe's house. It was Bubbe's special holiday and she would spend the entire month of November getting ready for it. Amanda's favorite part was always at bedtime, when Bubbe let Amanda choose a wishbone to make a Thanksgiving wish. But now her grandmother has passed away. Amanda's family gathers together, but nothing is the same. And Bubbe is not there this year to share a wish.

This is a sad yet heart-warming book. I recommend reading it with some Kleenex close by! Thompson's stunning paintings complement the story well.


Early Readers:

Annie and Snowball and the Thankful Friends,
written by Cynthia Rylant
and illustrated by Sucie Stevenson, 2011

Annie loves Thanksgiving. There is a big table at her house and she wants lots of people around it this year for the feast. But Annie just lives with her father and her rabbit, Snowball. Who can she invite to share the holiday meal with them?

This book for beginning readers shows how special it can be to include those around us in our holiday activities.


The Thanksgiving Beast Feast,
written and illustrated by Karen Gray Ruelle, 1999

Thanksgiving is Harry's favorite holiday, and Emily's, too, because they love the food. When their mother explains that the holiday is also about giving thanks, and teaches them about the first Thanksgiving, the siblings come up with an idea to share a feast with some unusual guests, their neighborhood wildlife.

I liked this book because the story reminded me of my own kids. I can just picture them going along with Harry and Emily's idea! I also enjoyed the gentle humor that Ruelle included throughout.


The Know-Nothings Talk Turkey
written by Michele Sobel Spirn
and illustrated by R. W. Alley, 2000

The Know-Nothings -- Boris, Morris, Norris, and Doris -- are not sure how to celebrate Thanksgiving until Doris reads about it in a book. She explains that many people serve a turkey dinner. But how can they serve the turkey his dinner if he won't even sit down?

This is a fun, silly book that kids will love to read. It will leave them (and any adults listening or reading along) laughing!


Middle Grade Nonfiction:

1621: A New Look at Thanksgiving,
written by Catherine O'Neill Grace and Margaret M. Bruchac,
photographs by Sissie Brimberg and Cotton Coulson, 2001

From the book's inside front cover: "Taking a new look at Thanksgiving means putting aside the myth. It means taking a new look at history. It means questioning what we think we know. It means recovering lost voices -- the voices of the Wampanoag people. True history includes the voices of all its participants. Read, listen, and think about our shared history."

I was fascinated by this book. I'll admit, I had never looked much beyond the myths of Thanksgiving before. I learned so many things about the Wampanoag people and the true history of Thanksgiving from these pages. I also enjoyed looking at the photographs, taken at Plimoth Plantation in 2000, when several hundred people (including over one hundred Wampanoag) gathered there to reenact the 1621 harvest gathering.


Giving Thanks: Poems, Prayers, and
Praise Songs of Thanksgiving,
edited and with reflections by Katherine Paterson
and illustrated by Pamela Dalton, 2013

This special book contains over 50 prayers, poems, and songs from a wide range of cultures, religions, and voices, including Desmond Tutu, e. e. cummings, John Wesley, and Wendell Berry. Combined with Dalton's gorgeous cut-paper artwork and reflections from Paterson, this book is one I would love to add to my collection! I know that I would turn to it again and again -- and not only in November.


My Very Own Thanksgiving:
A Book of Cooking and Crafts,
written by Robin West
and illustrated by Robert L. and Diane Wolfe (photos)
and Susan Slattery Burke (drawings), 1993

The recipes in this book are divided into five different menus: Harvest Feast, Take Pity on the Turkey, Set Sail on the Mayflower, The Big Game, and We Gather Together. They include several easy recipes for beginners, plus some more-advanced recipes for kids and parents to work on together. I have not had a chance to try any of the recipes yet, but there are several that caught my eye. I plan to make a few next week!

In between recipes you will find step-by-step instructions for five cute Thanksgiving crafts, as well as stories, Thanksgiving facts, and ideas for fun games to play over the holidays.


written by Ellyn Sanna, 2005

This cookbook contains 17 delicious-sounding recipes for your holiday feast as well as information about Thanksgiving culture, history, and traditions. Again, I found some recipes inside that I am putting on my menu for next week!

I found this book in my library's middle grade nonfiction section. In my opinion, however, this one seems like it belongs more in the young adult or adult section. Younger children can certainly help out with these recipes but -- with the exception of the Cranberry Nut Snack Mix recipe -- I wouldn't recommend allowing an elementary school child to try making them on his/her own.


For even more books about Thanksgiving, here are links to my posts from previous years:

Celebrating Thanksgiving With Books
A Feast of Books for Thanksgiving

Have you read any of the books above? If so, I'd love to hear what you thought of them. Also, please share any of your favorite Thanksgiving books that you don't see here -- I am always looking for new ones to read! :)

Thursday, November 19, 2015

A key...

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"Let poetry be like a key
Opening a thousand doors."

 ~ Vicente Huidobro

Poetry unlocks many, many doors when we read it or write it -- doors to feelings, images, stories, sounds, and so much more. Do you let poetry be a key for you?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


This week's word is otiose [oh-shee-ohs]. This is a new word for me. I just happened to spot it on the Dictionary.com
website earlier this month. I had never seen or heard the word before and had no idea what it meant, so I decided to look it up and learn about it. It turns out that otiose is an adjective which means "being at leisure; idle". It can also mean "lazy" or "serving no practical purpose". Here are some sentences I came up with using the word:

My daughter is so busy with classes 
and work right now. She is longing for the otiose days 
of vacation and can't wait for Thanksgiving Break 
to hurry up and get here!

I love those times when I can stay in my pajamas, 
lounge on the couch with a good book, 
and just be otiose all day long.

I guess it would be otiose to ask you 
what you thought of that book, 
since you haven't even opened it yet!

Have you heard the word "otiose" before? How would you use it in a sentence?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Fall Wind

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Fall Wind

Pods of summer crowd around the door;
I take them in the autumn of my hands.

Last night I heard the first cold wind outside;
the wind blew soft, and yet I shiver twice:

Once for thin walls, once for the sound of time.

~ William Stafford

I like the phrases "pods of summer" and "autumn of my hands". Reading this poem makes me shiver, too! How about you?

Monday, November 16, 2015

It is time, now.

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An excerpt:

     Now frost lies thick on the fields at dawn, and the winged ones pass overhead in great numbers, calling out their good-byes. It is Taqountikeeswush, the Moon of the Falling Leaves. The Creator's gifts have been harvested, dried, and tucked away in auqunnash in the bosom of Earth Mother. They will provide for the People all through the long, cold months to come, the long, cold months of Papone. It is time, now. Time for the People to come together, together to give thanks.

~ from Nickommoh!: 
A Thanksgiving Celebration,
written by Jackie French Koller

Taqountikeeswush - Harvest Month

auqunnash - pits dug into the earth and lined with mats

Papone - winter

Across time and cultures, people have gathered together to celebrate the harvest and give thanks. I'm looking forward to doing the same next week. How about you?

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Felt with the heart.

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"The best and most 
beautiful things in the world 
cannot be seen or even touched.  
They must be felt with the heart."
~ Helen Keller

This is another of my favorite quotes. It is oh, so true. You can't see or touch things like kindness, compassion, and unconditional love. You can only feel them in your heart. I hope that you will feel these beautiful things today!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

The Mist and All

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The Mist and All

I like the fall,
The mist and all.
I like the night owl’s
Lonely call—
And wailing sound
Of wind around.

I like the gray
November day,
And bare, dead boughs
That coldly sway
Against my pane.
I like the rain.

I like to sit
And laugh at it—
And tend
My cozy fire a bit.
I like the fall—
The mist and all—

~ Dixie Willson

I love the sounds in this poem, the rhythm and rhymes. Willson's words paint a picture in my head -- I  imagine myself relaxing by a crackling fire, rocking back and forth in a rocking chair, perhaps, and gazing out my window at the autumn mist. What do you see or hear or feel when you read the poem?

Friday, November 13, 2015

Rhythm and Rhyme: Books for People Who Love Poetry

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I love poetry. For as long as I can remember, I've loved to read it and I've loved to write it. It's been awhile since I've written any (I need to change that!) but I have been lucky enough to read A LOT of poetry over the last several months. Below are the books of poetry that I enjoyed the most. There is something for everyone in this collection -- funny poetry, sad poetry, classic poetry, brand new poetry, a book about a poet, a book with ideas for writing poetry, and much more!

Picture book:

Enormous Smallness:
A Story of E. E. Cummings,
written by Matthew Burgess
and illustrated by Kris Di Giacomo, 2015

A biography of E. E. Cummings, this book tells the tale of a boy who loved words: "What words say and how they sound and look. He loved the way they hum, buzz, pop, and swish." Edward Estlin Cummings began composing poetry at the age of 3; his mother wrote the poems down for him and collected them in a little book. And then this little boy with the big imagination grew up to become one of America's best loved poets. The book includes a timeline of events in Cummings's life as well as several of his poems.

I have long been a fan of E. E. Cummings, but I didn't know much about his life before reading this book. I found the story fascinating! Burgess's playful text and Di Giacomo's sweet illustrations combine to give young readers this charming glimpse into the life of a poet. I liked this book so much that it is now on my "to buy" list!


Middle grade poetry:

Sing a Song of Popcorn:
Every Child's Book of Poems,
selected by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers,
Eva Moore, Mary Michaels White, and Jan Moore,
and illustrated by Marcia Brown, Leo and Diane Dillon,
Richard Egielski, Trina Schart Hyman, Arnold Lobel,
Maurice Sendak, Marc Simont, and Margo Zemach, 1988

This collection for children contains over 100 poems from writers such as David McCord, A. A. Milne, and Christina G. Rossetti. The poems are organized by theme (for example, "Mostly Weather", "Mostly Nonsense", or "In a Few Words"), and each section is illustrated by a different Caldecott Medal Artist.


The Death of the Hat:
A Brief History of Poetry in 50 Objects,
selected by Paul B. Janeczko
and illustrated by Chris Raschka, 2015

The publisher says this about The Death of the Hat: "A celebrated duo reunites for a look at poems through history inspired by objects -- earthly and celestial -- reflecting the time in which each poet lived." The book includes poetry from Rumi, Shakespeare, Robert Burns, Billy Collins, William Wordsworth, and more. Raschka's colorful artwork pairs nicely with each poem.


Poetry for Young People:
Langston Hughes,
edited by David Roessel & Arnold Rampersad
and illustrated by Benny Andrews, 2006

"One of the central figures in the Harlem Renaissance—the flowering of black culture that took place in the 1920s and 30s—Langston Hughes captured the soul of his people, and gave voice to their concerns about race and social justice. His magnificent and powerful words still resonate today...." So begins the blurb on the inside front cover.

This book contains Hughes's best known and well-loved poems, such as "My People", "Words Like Freedom", and "I, Too".


Vile Verses,
written by Roald Dahl
and illustrated by many, 2005

In the mood for some silly poetry with a bit of dark humor on the side? If so, try this book! Most of the poems are from Dahl's novels and earlier poetry collections, but there are also a few previously unpublished ones. The fun illustrations really complement Dahl's words.


Poems to Learn by Heart,
selected by Caroline Kennedy
and illustrated by Jon J. Muth, 2013

Kennedy compiled over one hundred of her favorite poems for this volume. About the memorization of poems she says, "If we learn a poem by heart, it is ours forever - and better still, we can share it with others, yet not have to give it away." 

Writers featured in this book include Nikki Grimes, Ogden Nash, Linda Sue Park, and even Abraham Lincoln! In addition to the poetry, I also appreciated Muth's gorgeous artwork throughout.


Poem Depot:
Aisles of Smiles,
written and illustrated by Douglas Florian, 2014

Looking for a book of poetry to make you giggle? Florian delivers just that with his Poem Depot, which is jam-packed with 170 of his nonsense poems and amusing line drawings.


Understanding Poetry:
Rhyme, Meter, and Other Word Music,
written by Jennifer Fandel, 2005

In this educational book, Fandel offers definitions for various poetry-related terms and talks about the rhythm of poetry -- how it is achieved and why it is effective. She also includes several well-known poems as examples.


Young adult poetry:

Poetry Comics:
An Animated Anthology,
selected and illustrated by Dave Morice, 2003

In this book, Morice takes 37 different poems from famous writers, from Shakespeare to William Wordsworth to Emily Dickinson to Edgar Allan Poe, and turns them into comic strips. (He also includes a step-by-step guide to creating your own poetry comics.) I really liked several of the comic strips but my favorite had to be Morice's take on Poe's "The Raven"!


Navajo: Visions and Voices
Across the Mesa,
 written and illustrated by Shonto Begay, 1995

Accompanied by his beautiful paintings, Begay's poetry focuses on various subjects "from creation stories to childhood memories, reflections on tribal rituals to the profound effect, good and bad, of white people on Navajo land and culture". 


This Same Sky: A Collection
of Poems from around the World,
selected by Naomi Shihab Nye, 1996

Nye's anthology contains the work of 129 poets from 68 different countries. Each poem within celebrates the natural world, with its human and animal inhabitants. As a reviewer said on Goodreads, it is "a peek into poetry around the world". 


Quiet Storm:
Voices of Young Black Poets,
selected by Lydia Omolola Okutoro, 2002

For this book, Okutoro selected the work of forty-nine poets, ages 13 to 21, from around the globe. Each chapter begins with a well-known poet's verse and then continues with the writings of teens and young adults, about a wide variety of subjects: home and homelessness, falling in love, dreams of a brighter future, and more.


I Just HOPE It's Lethal:
Poems of Sadness, Madness, & Joy,
collected by Liz Rosenberg & Deena November, 2005

This collection includes poetry from Margaret Atwood, T. S. Eliot, Dorothy Parker, Rumi, Sylvia Plath, and many others. Each section centers around a specific emotion that teens (and other humans!) are familiar with.


Time You Let Me In:
25 Poets Under 25,
selected by Naomi Shihab Nye, 2010

In this, the second anthology I read that was compiled by Nye, she brings together the work from 26 (even though the title says 25) young adults, poets like Mary Selph, Gray Emerson, Amal Khan, Jonah Ogles, and Margaret Bashaar.


Postcard Poems:
A Collection of Poetry for Sharing,
edited by Paul B. Janeczko, 1979

This collection, the oldest book in today's post, includes poems from writers such as D.H. Lawrence, William Carlos Williams, Marianne Moore, Carl Sandburg, and Eve Merriam.


I Am Writing a Poem About...:
A Game of Poetry,
edited by Myra Cohn Livingston, 1997

As a teacher of poetry at UCLA, Livingston gave an assignment to her class: write a poem with the word rabbit in it. Later, she asked her students to write another poem and include the words ring, drum, and blanket. Finally, the classmates were to write a poem with these six words: hole, friend, candle, ocean, snake, and either scarecrow or bucket. The resulting poems from these assignments were as varied as the people who wrote them! In this slim volume, Livingston shares 43 of the poems from her students -- many of whom went on to become well-known writers.


Please Excuse This Poem:
100 New Poets for the Next Generation,
edited by Brett Fletcher Lauer & Lynn Melnick, 2015

As the blurb on the inside cover says, "Here is a cross-section of American poetry as it is right now—full of grit and love, sparkling with humor, searing the heart, smashing through boundaries on every page. Please Excuse This Poem features one hundred acclaimed younger poets from truly diverse backgrounds and points of view, whose work has appeared everywhere from The New Yorker to Twitter, tackling a startling range of subjects in a startling range of poetic forms."


Have you read any of the books shown above? If so, what did you think of them? What are some of your favorite poetry collections?