Overhead the Sun
Lines from Walt Whitman ~ Antonio Frasconi
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1969
Admittedly, I wasn't much of a reader as a child. I loved children's books, but I was more of the make-believe play sort of girl. Probably too social and self-absorbed to fully appreciate the value of a good book. It wasn't until a high school English teacher introduced me to Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass that a book spoke to me directly. It was as if Walt had written it expressly for me.
When I found this "all ages" book in the children's poetry section of a library sale a few years back, I was thrilled not just by the fabulous Frasconi wood cuts, but that I'd found a way to engage my son in Whitman. Though not expecting him to find the same cosmic meaning in the words as I had, I do know that just about anyone can appreciate descriptions and cadence through language. And hopefully, a wee bit of cosmic energy will siphon down.
There was a child went forth every day,
And the first object he look'd upon, that object he became,
And that object became part of him for the day or a certain part of the day,
Or for many years or stretching cycles of years.
That's the great thing about books.
They have a habit of finding you at exactly the right moment.
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