May We Suggest

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National Poetry Month Biographies

Celebrate National Poetry Month by getting to know more about the lives of some of our greatest poets:
 

Longfellow: a rediscovered life by Charles C. Calhoun

 

 

Yeats's ghosts: the secret life of W.B. Yeats by Brenda Maddox

 

 

 

 

Dylan Thomas: a new life by Andrew Lycett

 

 

 

 

From noon to starry night: a life of Walt Whitman by Philip Callow

 

 

 

 

Rough magic: a biography of Sylvia Plath by Paul Alexander

 

Angela's ashes : a memoir by Frank McCourt

Carlos Eire's National Book Award-winning memoir of his childhood in 1950s Havana and the overnight upheaval of his world in January 1959, when the Batista government was toppled.

Check out one of the following YA titles to discover a different culture, or perhaps find a reflection of your own experiences.

Culture: Native American

Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

A big dose of lucky by Marthe Jocelyn

Culture: Canadian Aboriginal

Malou has just turned sixteen—hardly old enough to be out in the world on her own—and all she knows for sure is that she’s mixed-race and that she was left at an orphanage as a newborn. Beyond that, it’s a mystery—a mystery that takes her to the little town of Parry Sound, where she finds lots of young brown faces like hers. Are these her relatives, and why doesn’t anyone want to talk about it?

The bitter side of sweet by Tara Sullivan

Culture: Ivorian (Ivory Coast)

They only wanted to make some money during the dry season to help their impoverished family; instead they were tricked into forced labor on a plantation in the Ivory Coast. For two years what has mattered are the number of cacao pods Amadou and his younger brother, Seydou, can chop down in a day. Then Khadija comes, the first girl who has ever come to camp, and she’s a wild thing. She fights, but the bosses break her. Now the three band together as family and try just once more to escape.

Explains the meaning of Japanese culture which is found in eight traditional handicrafts and provides instructions for creating them. Includes a list of materials needed.

Presents step-by-step instructions for creating nine handicraft projects inspired by Indian art, including ankle bells, a henna key chain, and a Diwali bowl.

Presents step-by-step directions for drawing the national flag, a castle, a stork, and other sights and symbols of Germany.

Many books that hold poetry live on the nonfiction shelves between J808.81J811 and J821, but don't forget that poems live all over the library. Below are a few illustrated poems that require a little more exploration to find. While all are located within the Children's Department, they may have a wider appeal. Click on each title for location and availability information.

 

Simple poetic language and close-up photographs invite readers to join two fireflies as they try to find each other among the many flashing firefly lights on a summer evening.

The land of nod by Robert Louis Stevenson

A young boy explores the magical dreamworld he goes to when he falls asleep.

If- by Rudyard Kipling

The famously inspirational poem written by Rudyard Kipling in 1895, which first appeared in a 1910 collection of short stories and poems, is here accompanied by illustrations.

There are so many great tales in the J398 collection, including ones from China and Japan! Be sure to check out these titles to become more familiar with these cultural tales.

An illustrated retelling of nineteen fables and tales from China, each of which features a nugget of ancient folk wisdom and introduces aspects of traditional Chinese culture and lore.

A poor farmer's youngest daughter agrees to marry a fierce dragon in order to save her father's life.

Ah Fu finds a white pony wandering the grassland, that develops a strange pattern on its back after jumping in the Yellow river.

Have you always wanted to read more African Folklore, but you weren't sure where to start? Enjoy these titles from the Kids Folktales and Fairytales section at the library!

A cumulative rhyme relating how Ki-pat brought rain to the drought-stricken Kapiti Plain.

A folk explanation for the guinea fowl's protective coloration that enables it to hide from its natural predator, the lion.

A collection of traditional stories from different parts of Africa, featuring varied characters and themes-- some familiar, some newer.

Explore India's cultural tales with these finds in the Children's Department collection!

Retells the Hindu tale of a heroic prince and his bride who are separated by the demon prince Ravana until the Monkey Army of Hanuman, god of the wind, helps them.

Brahma dreaming by John Jackson

Draws eight stories from well-known collections of Indian folktales--Hitopadesha tales, Jataka tales, and Panchantra tales--and presents them with cartoon-like illustrations.

There are many different types of cultures in the world, including our own Native American Tribal cultures here in America. Here are some titles to get you started on delving into their cultural tales and heritage.

During a hard winter, Rainbow Crow sets out to find the sun and bring warmth to the other animals, but during his journey he is changed in dramatic ways.

Hiawatha and the great peace by Virginia Schomp

"A Native American legend based in part on the true story of the founding of the Iroquois League by the hero Deganawidah and his companion Hiawatha"--Provided by publisher.

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