Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Collected Poems For Children

Collected Poems For Children

Spring 2007 Poetry
Ages: 8 & Up
Author: Ted Hughes
Illustrator: Raymond Briggs
ISBN: 978-0-374-33673-8
Hardcover Price: $15.00
Review:
The late Ted Hughes, former Poet Laureate of England, is perhaps best known to American readers as the former husband of Sylvia Plath. Therefore it may come as some surprise to discover this playful collection of over 250 kid–friendly poems. Hughes's subjects are mostly animals, both real and imaginary, ranging from the lowly worm and snail up through nobler mythical creatures. There is a series of moon poems as well (“Moon–Wind, Moon-Roses,” etc.), and several that focus on family members (including a fairy godmother). The poems, collected from throughout Hughes's life, get progressively more challenging for the reader. For example, a younger child can appreciate the early simplicity of “Jellyfish” (“Though I look like a slob / It's a delicate job / Being just a blob”), while older readers can try their hand at deciphering the free–verse meditations on nature that make up later selections. These poems are paired with lovely spare sketches by Raymond Briggs, the award–winning illustrator of such picture books as The Snowman. This is a fine choice for animal lovers and anyone who appreciates the beauty of language.
Zarina Mullan Plath   ©2007 Parents' Choice
Zarina Mullan Plath has undergraduate degrees in both biology and English. Her interests include cookbooks/culinary history, South Asian literature (especially in regards to South Asians in America), and, of course, children's literature. Her poetry is included in the anthology Sweeping Beauty (U. of Iowa Press, 2005). Zarina lives in Central Illinois with her husband, two children, and assorted pets.


Share This