Poetry for Young People: William Carlos Williams

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9781402700064: Poetry for Young People: William Carlos Williams
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William Carlos Williams' poems are like pictures, full of visual images that youngsters will quickly grasp and enjoy. Thirty-two of his finest verses, accompanied by gorgeous paintings that capture Williams' evocative references to nature and everyday life, grace this new title in the much-celebrated Poetry for Young People series. Renowned scholar and professor Christopher MacGowan, who has edited several volumes of Williams' work, provides a fascinating biography of this poet-doctor as well as invaluable annotations that explain unfamiliar vocabulary. Exquisite paintings, by the distinguished artist Robert Crockett, make every page a treat to look at and truly illuminate the poems. Among the poems included here are "Dawn," with its lovely evocation of bird song and flight; "Primrose," a celebration of summer's joys; "10/30," a witty verse that imitates the sounds of freight trains passing by the station near his home; and an excerpt from his famed book-length poem, "Paterson."

Professor Christopher MacGowan is co-editor of Volume I of The Collected Poems of William Carlos Williams, and editor of Volume II and other books of Williams's poetry. He is also the author of articles on Sherwood Anderson, Denise Levertov, and Vladimir Nabokov. Professor MacGowan is the Chair of the English department at The College of William and Mary.

Robert Crockett has illustrated numerous books, magazine articles, and advertising pieces. Among his many awards are 11 gold and silver medals from the San Francisco Society of Illustrators (of which he was past president). His paintings regularly show in the New York Society of Illustrators Annual Exhibit.

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Gr. 6-12. The introduction and commentary that MacGowan, a Williams scholar, provides not only fills in biographical details but expertly illuminates the craft and sensibility behind these 31 deceptively simple imagist poems. Along with well-known references to that red wheelbarrow and the "figure 5 / in gold / on a red / firetruck," the brief selections include a passage from Williams' magnum opus Paterson, observations of seasons and weather, personal reflections, and vivid evocations of flowers, plums, and other everyday, but suddenly somehow uncommon, articles. Capturing the poems' pervasive lyricism, Crockett (a pseudonym) illustrates each with literal, if hazy, figures, items, and landscapes. Despite its simple language and clear imagery, Williams' poetry is not widely available to young readers. This gathering should help to remedy that. John Peters
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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