Poetrees by Douglas Florian

Poetrees by Douglas Florian

Poetrees by Douglas Florian (Beach Lane Books, 2010) is a creative collection of poems about trees, seeds, and the growing cycle of plant life presented in a colorful and innovative way.

The first thing to catch the reader’s attention is the layout of the book. While most picture books have a left side binding, this one has a top binding. It is fun to peruse a book that has such a different approach, and since trees are often tall and majestic, this is simply perfect for a picture book about majestic trees!

Beyond the page layout, however, is the creativity with which the author formats each poem. His “shape poems” are wonderfully accurate. The poem about the baobab, for example, is fat, with a rectangular structure just like the thick tree. “Oak” has two close lines and then two expanded lines and the four-line poem almost resembles an acorn’s thick top and lighter bottom portion. (more…)

“Zola” by E.A. Robinson

I am working on a different project today, but I came across this amazing poem by E.A. Robinson (1869-1935), who won more than one Pulitzer Prize in poetry. It’s called “Zola,” and it so perfectly captures why I disliked Germinal at the same time I absolutely loved it. If you’ve read any Zola before, you have to read this poem. If you want to read Zola, same thing.

Even if you’ve never read Zola before, what do you think of this poem? Does it capture your thoughts about any novel or author you’ve ever read?