Monday, April 27, 2009

Poetry Month -- Imaginary Menagerie

Imaginary Menagerie: A Book of Curious Creatures
by Julie Larios
illustrated by Julie Paschkis
Harcourt, 2008

Sometimes you just have to be patient and know that the right books will find the right readers eventually. IMAGINARY MENAGERIE has been in my poetry collection the whole school year, but last Friday it was "discovered."

Two girls chose it for Poetry Friday and asked to read a poem without telling us the title to see if we could guess what it was about. Many of the students guessed. Can you?

How can a beast speak
with a stone tongue,
with a stone throat?
My mouth is a rainspout. I screech. I shout.
How can a beast fly
with stone wings?
I fly when the bells ring and the hunchback is home.
Does a stone beast sleep
in a stone nest?
I am on guard. I never rest.

Did you guess Gargoyle? If you did, you were right!

I think we'll come back to this poem next week. When we wrote acrostics, we made the rule that you couldn't use your "key word," your vertical word, anywhere in the poem. The poem had to be about that word without using it. That's exactly what Julie Larios does in each of these poems. That's exactly what we want our young writers to do when we ask them to, "Show; don't tell."

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