Posted by: booksheep | October 11, 2010


Ubiquitous: Celebrating Nature’s Survivors by Joyce Sidman

Poetry and science combined, what could be better?  Joyce Sidman’s newest collection presents 14 poems of all different kinds, each of which introduces one unique life form.  From bacteria and lichen to crows and humans, each poem is paired with a paragraph of engaging, scientific fact about that creature.

My favorite poem by far is the one dedicated to squirrels.  Written inside the dark silhouette of a squirrel and his bushy tail, this poem is basically one long run-on sentence. 

OK, your brains are big while ours are just the size of walnuts which we love to eat by the way with teeth that can chew through any sort of bird feeder you care to erect and believe me we will find them no matter where you put ’em being insatiably curious and natural-born problem-solvers just as we find the nuts we cleverly hid last fall…

Illustrations by Caldecott Honor winning Beckie Prange are the cherry on top of this book.  Be sure to check out the one with the poem “The Mollusk That Made You.”  A  beautiful conch shell lies in a shallow tide pool, with the soft mollusk’s eyes poking shyly over the rim of the shell as if he’s afraid to come out.

Don’t forget to check out Sidman’s other books while you’re at it.  Red Sings From Treetops: A Year In Colors was a Caldecott Honor book for 2009, and her collection This Is Just to Say: Poems of Apology and Forgiveness was on the 2008-2009 Texas Bluebonnet reading list.

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