Through a collection of poems that spans more than 1400 years of human language play, anthologist Paul Janeczko traces the history of poetry. A poem by Eloise Greenfield, “Things,” introduces the organizing principle for this collection, which proffers poems about objects drawn from nine different historical periods. While Western poets predominate the collection, a limitation Janeczko acknowledges in a lengthy introduction, there is a representative sampling of poetry with Eastern origins. This title is the fourth in a series of anthologies produced through the collaboration between Janeczko and Caldecott winning artist Chris Raschka. As with the other titles, Raschka’s soft subtle watercolors provide visual support without overwhelming the poems, leaving the words open for multiple interpretations by different readers. Readers who ponder this compelling collection of words from fifty poets, some familiar to them, and some new, will surely walk away with a deeper understanding of the human experience across centuries.
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