Friday, March 30, 2007

My First Poetry Friday-A Family of Poems


While I prefer reading fictional chapter and picture books to my children, I do occasionally pull out a poetry anthology to read aloud. One technique for getting my oldest son involved is to make it a game. I start turning the pages of the book and when he tells me to stop I read the poem on the page he selected. Then his sister and brother take their turns. Our recent favorite anthology due to it's beautiful illustrations and mix of poetry is A Family of Poems collected by Caroline Kennedy and illustrated by Jon J. Muth. I will probably talk about this volume again since it has inspired our family in other ways.
This is our current favorite from this book. (I searched far and wide to make sure this was copyright free. Needless to say, it is a very, very old poem.)

A Fairy in Armor

He put his acorn helmet on;
It was plumed of the silk of the thistle down;
The corslet plate that guarded his breast
Was once the wild bee's golden vest;
His cloak, of a thousand mingled dyes,
Was formed of the wings of butterflies;
His shield was the shell of a lady-bug green,
Studs of gold on a ground of green;
And the quivering lance which he brandished bright,
Was the sting of a wasp he had slain in fight.
Swift he bestrode his fire-fly steed;
He bared his blade of the bent-grass blue;
He drove his spurs of the cockle-seed,
And away like a glance of thought he flew,
To skim the heavens, and follow far
The fiery trail of the rocket-star.

Joseph Rodman Drake

And you should see the illustration....monarch wings and all.

1 comment:

cloudscome said...

Great collection!