A Mirror to Nature: Poems About Reflection
by Jane Yolen, photographs by Jason Stemple
Wordsong 2009, review from library copy
Bringing together photographs and poems is only the first layer of pairing in this picture book of poetry. Each spread features a photograph of an animal, reflected back in a body of water, along with a descriptive poem and a fact about the animal. The photographs have a simple, natural artistry composing and shaping the mirror theme, as the concepts of reflection, pairs, and water weave throughout the poetry. The most eye-catching photographs in the book feature deeper contrast between the represented animal and the landscape, but many of the selections have more subtle distinctions and a muted color scheme. Even the cover itself - lovely with its play of light, water, and reflection - seems like a hard sell for kids. The poems hit the right note, featuring haiku, couplets, and free verse and clever interpretations of the motif. As a sample, here is my favorite:
Coyote LandscapePoetry Friday is hosted today at Dori Reads. Don't forget to apply to be a Cybils judge - especially in the Poetry category!
For the moment, you are as still
As the roots, rocks, snow.
Only the water runs fast,
As fast as you, when you go
Whipping the wind, blazing the trail,
Following the panting prey.
But now, for a moment, you stand statue still
Reflecting on the day.
- written by Jane Yolen
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