Friday, January 02, 2009

Poetry of 2009 + Jean Little's Birthday

For this first posting of the new year, I thought I’d play “Janus” and look forward to the new poetry we can anticipate in 2009, since my last posting was a look back at all the poetry of 2008. I’ve been seeing several glimpses, with advance copies, publisher catalogs, emails, etc., and I’m very excited about what’s coming: a new Florian creation (on dinosaurs!), several Langston Hughes poem celebrations, something from Children’s Poet Laureate, Mary Ann Hoberman, a poem-a-day book by J. Pat Lewis, some poetry about work, animals, nature, and plenty of humor! Here’s the first list of the year! MUCH more to come…

Poetry Books Coming in 2009
1. Agee, Jon. 2009.
Orangutan Tongs; Poems to Tangle Your Tongue. New York: Disney-Hyperion.
2. Florian, Douglas. 2009.
Dinothesaurus. New York: Simon & Schuster.
3. Foxworthy, Jeff. 2009.
Silly Street. Illus. by Steve Bjorkman. New York: HarperCollins.
4. Heard, Georgia. 2009.
Falling Down the Page; A Book of List Poems. New York: Roaring Brook Press.
5. Hoberman, Mary Ann. 2009.
All Kinds of Families. New York: Little, Brown.
6. Hopkins, Lee Bennett. 2009. City I Love. Ill. by Marcellus Hall. New York: Abrams.
7. Hopkins, Lee Bennett. 2009. Incredible Inventions. Illus. by Julia Sarcone-Roach. New York: HarperCollins.
8. Hopkins, Lee Bennett. 2009. Sky Magic. Ill. by Mariusz Stawarski. New York: Dutton.

9. Hughes, Langston. 2009. My People. Ill. by Charles R Smith Jr. New York: Simon & Schuster.
10. Hughes, Langston. 2009.
The Negro Speaks of Rivers. Ill. by E. B. Lewis. New York: Disney-Hyperion.
11. Iyengar, Malathi Michelle. 2009.
Tan to Tamarind: Poems About the Color Brown. Illus. by Jamel Akib. San Francisco, CA: Children’s Book Press.
12. Katz, Alan. 2009. Going, Going, Gone!: And Other Silly Dilly Sports Songs. New York: Simon & Schuster.
13. Lewis, J. Patrick. 2009.
Countdown to Summer: A Poem for Every Day of the School Year. Ill. by Ethan Long. New York: Little Brown.
14. Lewis, J. Patrick. 2009.
Skywriting: Poems in Flight. Ill. by Laszlo Kubinui. Minneapolis, MN: Creative Editions.
15. Lewis, J. Patrick. 2009. Spot the Plot! A Riddle Book of Book Riddles. Ill. by Lynn Munsinger. San Francisco, CA: Chronicle Books.
16. Lewis, J. Patrick. 2009.
The Underwear Salesman: And Other Jobs for Better or Verse. Ill. by Serge Bloch. New York: Simon & Schuster/Atheneum.
17. Nesbitt, Kenn. 2009. My Hippo Has the Hiccups with CD: And Other Poems I Totally Made Up. Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks.
18. Paul, Ann Whitford. 2009.
Word Builder. New York: Simon & Schuster.
19. Ruddell, Deborah. 2009. A Whiff of Pine, A Hint of Skunk. New York: Simon & Schuster.
20. Sidman, Joyce. 2009.
Red Sings from Treetops; A Year in Colors. Illus. by Pamela Zagarenski. New York: Harcourt Houghton Mifflin.
21. Weinstock, Robert. 2009. Food Hates You, Too. New York: Disney-Hyperion.
22. Wilson, Karma. 2009.
What's the Weather Inside? New York: Simon & Schuster.
23. Wolff, Virginia Euwer. 2009.
This Full House. Harper Teen/The Bowen Press.
24. Zimmer, Tracie Vaughn. 2009.
Steady Hands: Poems About Work. New York: Clarion.

Dana, Barbara. 2009.
A Voice of Her Own; Becoming Emily Dickinson. New York: HarperCollins.
Dotlich, Rebecca Kai. Bella & Bean. New York: Simon & Schuster.

+ Poet Birthday Today! Today is also Canadian author and poet Jean Little’s birthday. Blind from birth, many of her works focus on characters with disabilities. I remember reading her first book, Mine for Keeps (1962) about a girl who had cerebral palsy, when I was a little girl and I just loved it! Jean Little is known primarily for writing fiction, but has one book, in particular, that blends fictional vignettes and poetry from the point of view of a spunky ‘tween that is wonderful-- It’s Hey World, Here I Am! One of my favorite poems about poetry is from this book. It’s cranky and hilarious and captures a moment that many of us may have experienced!

After English Class

By Jean Little

I used to like “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening.”

I liked the coming darkness,
The jingle of harness bells,

Breaking—and adding to—the stillness,

The gentle drift of the snow . . .

But today, the teacher told us what everything stood for.

The woods, the horse, the miles to go, the sleep—

They all have “hidden meanings.”

It’s grown so complicated now that,
Next time I drive by,

I don’t think I’ll bother to stop.

From: Little, Jean. 1989. Hey World, Here I Am! New York: Harper & Row.

Start the year off right with Poetry Friday, hosted this week by A Year of Reading.

Image credits:;


Douglas Florian said...

Happy New Year, Sylvia!
and thank you so much for posting my 2009 book DINOTHESAURUS (a sneak peek is up today at my cafe)

Julie said...

I love what Jean Little says about losing the excitement of "Stopping by Woods" after dissecting the poem to death. It's what Paul Janeczko rightly calls "the Autopsy School of Poetics." I've been thinking a lot about this lately, because so many people tell me they are "Poetry-phobic." What turns kids away from their love of poetry (you see it on the playground)and makes them become adults intimidated by it? It's that killer search for one "right answer" to the wrong question,"What does this poem mean?" When a teacher says that the paraphrasable elements of a poem are primary, then ambiguity and paradox are lost, music is lost, language is lost, and the poem itself is lost. Poets are not scientists, making notations. They're artists, looking for connotations. And poetry isn't information. I love what Cleanth Brooks said about the paraphrasing of a poem - he called the result "propaganda."

Well, enough from me. But this is something that really intrigues me. Thanks for posting Ms. Little's poem, Sylvia.

Kelly Polark said...

Wow! So many great poetry books to look forward to this year!

Unknown said...

Sylvia, thank you for posting this. This list made me giggle with excitement. Bring on 2009!

tess said...

I am thrilled to be reviewing a forthcoming title for SLJ by Lee Bennett Hopkins, City I Love. The illustrator is Marcellus Hall (New Yorker, NYTimes, Atlantic). It's fabulous!
On another note, I am so happy to have found your blog.

Sylvia Vardell said...

Thanks so much for stopping by, folks, and all your great comments. How lovely to connect through poetry! Happy new year, everyone.

laurasalas said...

Sylvia--thanks for the upcoming books list. So many to look forward to (including multiple titles from some of my favorites!).

I have a picture book poetry collection coming out from Clarion in April called Stampede! Poems to Celebrate the Wild Side of School. I'm so excited!

Happy New Year, Sylvia. Thanks for all the great poetry info.

Sylvia Vardell said...

Congratulations, Laura, and thanks for letting me know about STAMPEDE. I'm so excited because I LOVE school poems-- and so do kids! I'll add it to my list and look forward to reading it.

Annie Donwerth Chikamatsu said...

Love Little's poem!
Thanks for the heads up on the books. I'm already behind!