Academic journal article Language Arts

National Geographic Book of Nature Poetry: More Than 200 Poems with Photographs That Float, Zoom, and Bloom!

Academic journal article Language Arts

National Geographic Book of Nature Poetry: More Than 200 Poems with Photographs That Float, Zoom, and Bloom!

Article excerpt

National Geographic Book of Nature Poetry: More Than 200 Poems with Photographs that Float, Zoom, and Bloom! Edited by J. Patrick Lewis National Geographic, 2015, 192 pp., ISBN 978-1-4263-2094-1

In his second edited poetry anthology for National Geographic, former US Children's Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis delivers another impressive poetry extravaganza paired with exquisite full-bleed nature photographs. Older familiar poets join current ones and first-timers across a plethora of poetry types. A rich bibliography is followed by title, poet, first line, and subject indexes. Other useful features include a table of contents, informative captions, and section-icon guides throughout. Also featured are extensive poet and photographer credits.

Lewis's theme is a reference to Henry David Thoreau's reflections on nature at Walden Pond: "It's not what you look at that matters. It's what you see" (p. 5). For example, "Tiger Got to Hunt" offers famous satirist and deeply humanist author Kurt Vonnegut's questioning vision: "Tiger got to hunt,/Bird got to fly;/Man got to sit and wonder/'Why, why, why?'/Tiger got to sleep,/ Bird got to land;/ Man got to tell himself he understand" (p. 16). A crisply focused tiger stares directly at readers, forcing them to see him. …

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