A Child's Garden of Verses
Robert Louis Stevenson ~ Gyo Fujikawa
Grosset & Dunlap, 1957
Hope all you kids out there are staying warm this frosty February afternoon. Let me help you get toasty by stepping up on the soap box for a moment regarding poetry and children. Whether or not you, personally, are a fan of the genre, introducing it into the lives of your children is an absolute necessity. It can help them so much in understanding the rhythms of language, and, in turn, rhyming and reading. Not to mention, it acts as a window to feelings and emotions, something so important to the young emotional lives of wee ones. That said, if you buy no other book of poetry for your child, let it be Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses.... any edition. I've waxed poetic, myself, a few times on this blog of the importance of this piece of literature, and with each read I fall more and more in love with it. (My first post - on the Duvoisin version - is here.) It is perfect.
Late lies the wintry sun a-bed,
A frosty, fiery sleepy-head;
Blinks but an hour or two; and then,
A blood-red orange, sets again.
Before the stars have left the skies,
At morning in the dark I rise;
And shivering in my nakedness,
By the cold candle, bathe and dress.
Close by the jolly fire I sit
To warm my frozen bones a bit;
Or with a reindeer-sled, explore
The colder countries round the door.
When to go out, my nurse doth wrap
Me in my comforter and cap;
The cold wind burns my face, and blows
Its frosty pepper up my nose.
Black are my steps on silver sod;
Thick blows my frosty breath abroad;
And tree and house, and hill and lake,
Are frosted like a wedding cake.
Now that I've had my say on poetry and winter, feel free to bask in the awesome glow that is Gyo Fujikawa. Perhaps if we stare long enough into her youthful faces, we'll be able to forget about the storms and ice and cold raging outside and be heated by the glow within.
(Still available new via a Sterling reprint.)
A Child's Garden of Verses - Ruhman edition
A Child's Garden of Verses - Wildsmith edition
A Child's Garden of Verses - Duvoisin edition
A Child's Garden of Verses - Provensen edition
A Child's Book of Poems
Let's Grow a Garden
Oh, What a Busy Day!
Our Best Friends
Come Follow me
Fairy Tales and Fables
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