It isn't as face paced as I'd like, but I think this book provides a solid surface view of the conflict in Darfur without the graphic violence. I espeIt isn't as face paced as I'd like, but I think this book provides a solid surface view of the conflict in Darfur without the graphic violence. I especially liked the illustrations that came with most of the verse. I wish it had been in color though.
Good information at the end of the book, too!...more
Ms. Marcus says line breaks help us figure out what matters to the poet Don't jumble your ideas MGoing to let the poetry speak for itself:
"Line Break Poem"
Ms. Marcus says line breaks help us figure out what matters to the poet Don't jumble your ideas Ms. Marcus says Every line should count.
Blue kicks--Pumas Blue-and-white Mets shirt Mets hat a watch my daddy gave me black pants but not dressy--they got side pockets Ten cornrows with zigzag parts like Sprewell's A gold chain with a cross on it from Mama--under my shirt white socks clean one white undershirt clean white underwear clean a dollar seventy-five left pocket two black pens a little notebook right pocket all my teeth inside my mouth one little bit crooked front one brown eyes a little mole by my lip lotion on so I don't look ashy three keys to Miss Edna's house back pocket some words I wanted to remember written on my right hand leftie Lonnie...more
This isn't a true verse novel, but rather poetry from different perspectives using different forms about the killing of Matthew Shepard. Here are someThis isn't a true verse novel, but rather poetry from different perspectives using different forms about the killing of Matthew Shepard. Here are some of my favorite poems from this collection:
"What Twenty Bucks Could Get You in 1998"
19 dozen eggs or 7 pounds of bacon
21 loaves of bread or 5 pounds of coffee
6 gallons of milk or 47 pounds of sugar
20 heads of lettuce or 12 gallons of gas
5 Big Macs served with fries or 2 life sentences served back to back
"Once Upon A Time" I don't like gay people. As far as Matt is concerned, I don't have any remorse. ---Aaron McKinney
Once I hung out in bars Now I hang out behind bars
Once I had a housemate Now I have a cellmate
Once I had a life Now I have a life sentence
Once my sons looked up to me Now the world looks down on me
Once I felt pent up and angry Now I am pent up and angry
A dark collection of verse retellings of famous fairy tales. My favorite in the collection was "Rapunzel: a Story in Five parts". It is told from theA dark collection of verse retellings of famous fairy tales. My favorite in the collection was "Rapunzel: a Story in Five parts". It is told from the point-of-view of the father of Rapunzel, her mother, the witch, the prince, and finally Rapunzel.Of course their point-of-view shows that Ever After isn't always what it's cracked up to be.
"Thumbelina: The Mole's Story" shows that little princess as a tease that broke the hearts of many creatures.
"Rumpelstiltskin" shows the Miller's daughter as a risk-taker, who ultimately is a little sad with her lot once the little wee splits in two.
Like many poetry collections some of these are better suited for the classroom than others. The selections that might be a little too dark for read alouds were: "The Stepsisters," --what was it like for Cinderella's step sisters? Were they really evil or was Cinderella really who she appeared to be? "Bearskin," --a retired soldier makes a deal with the devil and ends up with a lovely girl, but what about her sisters? "Diamonds and Toads,"--no husband wants a woman who vomits all the time, whether it be rubies and diamonds or toads and snacks. "The Robber Bridegroom," --about a man who likes to chop up pretty girls. "Bluebeard" --yikes! you married a serial killer, but wait...it might not be that bad?
A lot of those are really gory. "Little Match Girl" and "The Ugly Duckling" were the only poems in the bunch that read like poetry that needed to be interpreted and analyzed. The others were more straight forward in a story format.
I enjoyed the collection, but I wouldn't read it cover-to-cover in the classroom....more
I didn't know who Marc Chagall was before reading this book. Yes, shame on me. For other ignorant folks, Marc Chagall was a Russian Jewish painter, whI didn't know who Marc Chagall was before reading this book. Yes, shame on me. For other ignorant folks, Marc Chagall was a Russian Jewish painter, who lived a good portion of his life in Paris, but escaped to the U.S. during WWII. He was known for the surrealism in his work. He mostly worked with stained class in the latter part of his life.
Anyhoo...I thought it was okay. I mean I was ready to love it, but the poetry just didn't do it for me. I found the little nonfiction blurbs about Chagall's life at the time of the painting more interesting. The poetry tries to explain each piece of work in verse, but IMO it just didn't work. Here's a sample:
When I was nine and ten, I tried to catch the moon, Not as a fiddler on the roof like my grandfather or Uncle Zoussy, But as an artist in the sky. My cloudy chariot was bound to glimpse the grandeur, though i was nothing more than a tattered sack of brushes making short journeys into wonder.
So there it is. They all sound pretty much like that one. If you like that poem and it makes you want to see the corresponding painting, then this is the book for you. If you were like me, I wanted something more like Your Own, Sylvia: A Verse Portrait of Sylvia Plath, which was excellent. ...more
Even though this isn't a novel, it is a poetry picture book that tells the story of an African boy. It begins with his life in Africa with his fatherEven though this isn't a novel, it is a poetry picture book that tells the story of an African boy. It begins with his life in Africa with his father and his mothers (water, wind, earth, and fire). The boy is taken by slave traders and ends up in the Carolinas. It is a story of both loss and hope. Gorgeous illustrations and a beautiful tale that invokes sadness, but ends with a positive note that leaves the reader feeling that everything will be okay. ...more
Beautiful poetry that covers Guadalupe's, "Lupe," teenage years while her mother undergoes cancer treatments. This is a dual life between the United SBeautiful poetry that covers Guadalupe's, "Lupe," teenage years while her mother undergoes cancer treatments. This is a dual life between the United States and Mexico and life before and after cancer. Beautifully rendered which leaves you wanting more. My only complaint :). ...more
I label this a "verse novel" even though it isn't a typical verse novel. There is a story, but it isn't exactly chronological. It is a dictionary of wI label this a "verse novel" even though it isn't a typical verse novel. There is a story, but it isn't exactly chronological. It is a dictionary of words and how the words relate to one particular relationship. I think it still falls into the verse novel category because it is about the ups and downs, highs and lows, and the before and possible after of one relationship. But the words dictate the major events in the relationship rather than time. I also put this under "YA" even though it really isn't. I think portions of it can be taught in class or read, but the sex talk is too strong to read cover to cover.
I personally loved it. There wasn't a poem in here that I didn't like, but here are a couple of favorites. Only a few of the shorter ones:
barfly, n. you have the ability to talk to anyone, which is an ability I do not share.
breach, n. I didn't want to know who he was, or what you did, or that it didn't mean anything.
corrode, n. I spent all this time building a relationship. Then one night I left the window open, and it started to rust.
Okay, so I just realized that all of these short poems are depressing, but there is a lot of great uplifting poetry in this book too. These were just some of my favorites from flipping around in the front of the book.