Really cute collection of poems about God doing things you'd never imagine. Each poem is accompanied with an illustration of God doing all these diffe...moreReally cute collection of poems about God doing things you'd never imagine. Each poem is accompanied with an illustration of God doing all these different things, but God doesn't look the same in each illustration. He is either a man and woman, young and old, or biker/trucker/housewife. These illustrations definitely add to the light tone in the poetry. And they are in color!
My absolute favorite is "God went to beauty school". It begins with this:
He went there to learn how to give a good perm and ended up just crazy about nails so He opened up His own shop. "Nails by Jim" He called it. He was afraid to call it Nails by God. He was sure people would think He was being disrespectful and using His own name in vain and nobody would tip.
Some of my other favorites were "God got arrested," "God took a bath," and "God wrote a fan letter."
But overall, I'd say I loved the whole batch!
Very fun poems that make you laugh at certain parts of religion, but also manage to make you pause and think about your own beliefs, too.
Beautifully illustrated picture book of the poem by Langston Hughes. Poem below:
Lullaby (for a black mother)
My little dark baby, My little earth-thing, M...moreBeautifully illustrated picture book of the poem by Langston Hughes. Poem below:
Lullaby (for a black mother)
My little dark baby, My little earth-thing, My little love-one, What shall I sing For your lullaby? Stars, Stars, A necklace of stars Winding the night. My little black baby, My dark body's baby, What shall I sing For your lullaby? Moon, Moon, Great diamond moon, Kissing the night. Oh, little dark baby, Night black baby, Stars, stars, Moon, Night stars, Moon, For your sleep-song lullaby! (less)
Interesting anthology of poetry from a variety of different poets, both famous and anonymous. Like all collections some are better than others, but th...moreInteresting anthology of poetry from a variety of different poets, both famous and anonymous. Like all collections some are better than others, but there are plenty of simple, repetitive poems in here easy to model for beginning language learners. Also some more complicated ones with a sense of humour. Here are some of my favorites:
"About the teeth of sharks"
The thing about shark teeth is--teeth, one row above, one row beneath.
Now take a close look. Do you find It has another row behind?
Still closer--here, I'll hold your hat: Has it a third row behind that?
Now look in and...Look out! Oh my. I'll never know now! Well, goodbye.
Turtles sit. Turtles wait. Turtles never Think they're late.
Turtles crawl. Turtles snap. Turtles take A long, long nap.
Turtles listen. Turtles hide. Turtles like to stay inside.
"Oh the Toe-Test"
The fly, the fly, in the wink of an eye, can taste with his feet if the syrup is sweet or the bacon is salty. Oh is it his fault he gets toast on his toes as he tastes as he goes?
A very cute verse novel about a boy's love and adventures in fishing. The poetry appears in many different formats with each poem clearly identified a...moreA very cute verse novel about a boy's love and adventures in fishing. The poetry appears in many different formats with each poem clearly identified as "list poem," "concrete," "triolet," and etc. There is also a neat description of poetry techniques at the end of the book and how they add to the poem's meaning.
I will probably use a couple of poems from this book instead of reading it to the class in its entirety.
It is definitely geared towards the younger set. Not sure how my HS students will see it. I do think they would enjoy the black and white illustrations.
Here are a couple favorites:
"First Catch" lyric poem
I wish a fish I wish a fish I wish a fish would bite.
I hope I catch I hope I catch A fish before tonight.
I think I feel I think I feel I think I feel a tap.
I reel it in, I see a fin, And then I catch
"What Cat is That?" Riddle Poem
What has whiskers, spots, a grin, Fork tail, no legs, no fur--just skin?
What eats worms and likes to swim, Is gray, can jump, is long and slim?
What has spiny prickly fins? Be careful--they can poke like pins.
That is why, unlike a pup, This cat's not one to cuddle up.
Houses made of bricks call for a wolf's tricks, no more huffing and puffing! Cheers to clever Mr. Big and Bad when he comes down this chimney! who'll be boiled or roasted, triumphantly toasted? That one little piggy, by the hair of his chinny chin chin.
By the hair of his chinny chin chin, that one little piggy triumphantly toasted: "Who'll be boiled or roasted, when he comes down this chimney? Cheers to clever Mr. Big and Bad, huffing and puffing no more! A wolf's tricks call for houses made of bricks."(less)
This isn't a true verse novel, but rather poetry from different perspectives using different forms about the killing of Matthew Shepard. Here are some...moreThis 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 great collection of poetry. Each poem can stand alone, but they are written in pairs: apology poems the first half of the book and poetry responses...moreA great collection of poetry. Each poem can stand alone, but they are written in pairs: apology poems the first half of the book and poetry responses to the apologies. Each poem is written to someone with the author's signature at the end. These poems appear in a collection from a fictional classroom poetry project. The end notes of some of these poems are just as cute as the actual poem.
All of the poems in this collection are absolutely fantastic and include wonderful illustrations, but of course I have to include at least one of my favorites. Here it is:
"A Waste of Heart"
I'm sorry for loving you because you never notice me
I'm sorry I stare at you so much in class, trying to figure out what's on your mind.
I'm sorry for taking the time in the morning with my hair,
sorry for trying on six shirts to find the one that makes you say,
"Hey girl, lookin' fine," because you never say it.
I'm sorry because I know I'm wasting my heart on you.
Yeah, I'm sorry for loving you. So sorry that I think I'm going to stop.
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 the...moreA 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.(less)
Some of these poems are better than others, but overall I'd say this is a great collection for the high school classroom. There is some sex, but nothi...moreSome of these poems are better than others, but overall I'd say this is a great collection for the high school classroom. There is some sex, but nothing graphic and not present in every poem. The good poems really capture teenage emotion and disappointment. The bad ones are still better than most bad poetry :). Each poem has the first name of the poet (or what they gave in their email to the editor) as well as their age. Here are two of my favorites:
It was good. then it wasn't He was nice then he wasn't I was okay then I wasn't We both loved then we didn't It was always there but it never happened.
All the poems in this book begin with "This is just to say" just like the William Carlos Williams famous apology poem about the plums. Levine even goe...moreAll the poems in this book begin with "This is just to say" just like the William Carlos Williams famous apology poem about the plums. Levine even goes into some detail about this poem and how it inspired her to write her own collection of false apology poetry. She gives tips on how to mimic the poem and create your own false apology poetry.
My favorite poems were the twisted versions of fairy tales. You'll find Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, Peter Pan, and many more in this collection.
The repetition and ridiculous (some even were gross) illustrations make this a fun poem a day collection. Warning:Don't skip around. Levine has a poem specifically for those who flip through the book. Watch your back! A zombie will come to collect those who don't read from start to finish. (less)