What can I say? My kids just love poetry. Maybe it’s because my singing voice sounds like a goat gargling, and maybe it’s because they can always convince me to read just one more poem. There’s also the possibility that poetry is a beautiful, rhythmic exploration of story and feelings accessible by all ages?
(Naw, probably just the goat gargling part.)
We hope you’ll make a connection with this small collection of poetry books that Cool Mom Picks has covered, including two of my family’s all-time favorites.
This colorful, nonesensical volume is my daughter’s all-time favorite poetry book, thanks to gorgeous illustrations by Calef Brown and the fun, rhyming words of Edward Lear. Yes, she still sleeps with His Shoes Were Far Too Tight under her pillow. No, we’re still not sure what a Pobble is.
Shel Silverstein’s last book, Everything On It, is a favorite in our house. Granted, I can’t read the bittersweet poems about time passing without squirting tears, but the silly, nonsensical poems with his galloping rhyme style hit home for my kids. If you love Where the Sidewalk Ends (and who doesn’t!) this one’s a must for your collection.
For the traditionalist, Switching on the Moon is an anthology of sixty sleepytime poems that are sweet, fun, and calming, but never twee or babyish. Including works by Tennyson and Sylvia Plath, the poems and sweet illustrations will be adored by the whole family.
When Nikki Giovanni is the editor, you know a book of poetry is going to be exciting and deep. Hip Hop Speaks to Children was a big hit with a lot of us for its toe-tapping beat and the exciting range of fifty poems. You’ll find the likes of Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes and Queen Latifah, each accompanied by bright, full-page illustrations. The CD is a sweet bonus too.
Poetry is such a wonderful way to introduce children to new ideas and the joys of rhythm in words, but sometimes, poetry can soothe the hearts of adults, too. Morning Song: Poems for New Parents is an anthology of poetry not just for new parents, but for any caregivers, including grandparents. With selections from Yeats to Frost to Alice Walker and even bible verses, we think it’s a beautiful gift for new parents who might need a little grace.
And here’s the one you settle into the tissue next to the teething tablets, rattle, and the copy of Morning Song to remind new parents that sometimes, you have to laugh if you don’t want to go crazy. To What Miserable Wretches Have I Been Born? manages to perfectly straddle hilarious wit and a little heartfelt sentiment, which might hit home with the mom of a colicky baby around 3 a.m.
If babies could talk, they would tell us exactly how silly the idea of nipple confusion is, right? -Delilah