Monday, April 08, 2013

Blast from the Poetry Past: 1924

In 1924, A.A. Milne published When We Were Very Young illustrated by E. H. Shepard, followed by Now We Are Six (1927). Here’s where we first meet the now-beloved Winnie-the-Pooh in the poem, “Teddy Bear.”

One of my favorite poems from When We Were Very Young is the rather subversive, “Disobedience.” Here’s how it begins:

     "James James
     Morrison Morrison
     Weatherby George Dupree
     Took great
     Care of his Mother,
     Though he was only three.
     James James
     Said to his Mother,
     “Mother,” he said, said he:
“You must never go down to the end of the town,
     if you don’t go down with me.”

(You’ll find the whole poem here.)

Contemporary Connections
Here are a handful of recent poetry anthologies that feature “old” poems in “new” ways—with new art and a new look. Look for:

Andrews, Julie and Hamilton, Emma Walton. Eds. 2012. Julie Andrews’ Treasury for All Seasons: Poems and Songs to Celebrate the Year. Ill. by Marjorie Priceman. New York: Little, Brown.

Hoberman, Mary Ann. Ed. 2012. Forget-Me-Nots: Poems to Learn by Heart. Ill. by Michael Emberley. New York: Little, Brown.

Lewis, J. Patrick. Ed. 2012. National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry. Washington DC: National Geographic.

Merchant, Natalie. Ed. 2012. Leave Your Sleep. Ill. by Barbara McClintock. New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux.

 Posting by Sylvia M. Vardell © 2013. All rights reserved.

Image credits:


Linda B said...

My daughter and I memorized many a Milne poem as she was growing up, & it was a first read aloud to my first group of children, first graders! Special memories, Sylvia. I've given Poems To Learn By Heart to several, but still don't have my own copy! A must, I think. Thanks for the look back & forward!

Anonymous said...

I too have many an A.A. Milne poem memorized. And just last night my 8 year old and I were reading WHEN WE WERE VERY YOUNG as our bedtime treat. BTW, I've really been enjoying this Blast from the Blast Series. What a great idea!

Lynda said...

I don't know how I missed "Disobedience", but I love it. Thank you for calling it to my attention .

Some of Shel Silverstein's pieces have similar emotional ripples, don't you agree? A.A. Milne was obviously ahead of his time.

Sylvia Vardell said...

Thanks, for stopping by, friends. So glad that others share my fascination with poetry of the past-- its pleasures and its influence on today's writers!