Celebrate Poetry Month with HMH!

HMH Celebrates Poetry Month!

Poetry Kits

2013 Poetry Kit

Features The Candy Smash, The Lightning Dreamer, Every Forest Has a Song, and Gone Fishing

2012 Poetry Kit

Features Poem Runs, Edgar Allan Poe’s Pies, A Meal of the Stars, The Superheroes Employment Agency, and A Stick is an Excellent Thing

Stanza Poetry Kit

Button Up! Poetry Kit

Steady Hands Poetry Kit

Joyce Sidman Poetry Kit

Poetry Books

Lullaby (For a Black Mother)

by Langston Hughes
Illustrated by Sean Qualls

This beloved poem by Langston Hughes, in picture-book form for the first time and illustrated by the award-winning Sean Qualls, is an irresistible celebration of poetry and the love between mother and baby.

Forest Has a Song

By Amy Ludwig VanDerwater
Illustrated by Robbin Gourley

Twenty-six short, lighthearted poems about the forest and its animals, plants, and seasonal changes, beautifully and accurately illustrated in watercolor.

Gone Fishing

By Tamera Will Wissinger
Illustrated by Matthew Cordell

Join nine-year-old Catfish Sam as he captures a day of adventure in his net—and in verse — in this unique middle grade novel told through poems and comic illustrations.

The Candy Smash

By Jacqueline Davies

Poignant and funny, the fourth book in the best-selling Lemonade War series explores the distinctive power of poetry and love–fourth grade style.

Watch Jackie Davies discuss poetry techniques for kids.

Lightning Dreamer

By Margarita Engle

Newbery Honor-winner Margarita Engle tells the story of Cuban folk hero, abolitionist, and women’s rights pioneer Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda in this powerful new YA historical novel in verse.

Sing a Song of Piglets

By Eve Bunting
Illustrated by Emily Arnold McCully

From skiing in January, to surfing in July, to giving in December, two energetic piglets romp through the months of the year in this delightful calendar in verse.

Swirl By Swirl

by Joyce Sidman

A Caldecott medalist and a Newbery Honor-winning poet celebrate the beauty and value of spirals. Krommes and Sidman not only reveal the many spirals in nature—from crashing waves to spiraling galaxies—but also celebrate the beauty and usefulness of this fascinating shape.

Reader’s Guide

Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night

by Joyce Sidman

This Newbery Honor-winning picture book combines beautifully written poetry with facts of the forest and elaborate illustrations to form a marvelously engaging collection.

Reader’s Guide

Red Sings from Treetops

by Joyce Sidman

Caldecott Honor

With original and spot-on perceptions, Joyce Sidman brings the colors of the seasons to life in a fresh light, combining the senses of sight, sound, smell and taste. Illustrator Pam Zagarenski’s interpretations go byeond the concrete, allowing us to not just see color, but feel it.

Reader’s Guide

Poem Runs

by Douglas Florian

From the first pitch to the last out and all nine innings between, Douglas Florian’s collection of baseball poems brings wordplay, wit, and laughter to America’s springtime tradition.

Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars

by Douglas Florian

Blast off with Douglas Florian’s new high-flying compendium, which features twenty whimsical poems about space.Includes die-cut pages and a glossary of space terms.

Laugh-eteria

by Douglas Florian

Silly, irreverent, and always clever, these poems showcase Douglas Florian’s talent for creating outrageously entertaining verse. More than 150 witty poems accompanied by droll black-and-white drawings will knock the socks off devoted poetry fans and newcomers alike.

A Meal of the Stars Poems Up and Down 

By Dana Jensen,
illustrated by Tricia Tusa

Engaging and innovative, A Meal of the Stars shows how we live in a swaying, crashing, rising, falling–but utterly magical–world. With art merry and spirited, this distinctive collection of up and down poems reveals the extraordinary in the ordinary, resulting in a book young readers won’t want to put down!

Emma Dilemma

by Kristine O’Connell George

Emma is Jess’s little sister . . . and her dilemma. How can one small girl be sweet, funny, imaginative, playful, and affectionate as well as a clinging vine, brat, tattletale, and nuisance–all at the same time? The highlights and low points of this sibling relationship are insightfully evoked in short and simple poems, some funny, some touching, and all resonant with emotional truth.

Old Elm Speaks

by Kristine O’Connell George

This tree across the stream is a trickier bridge than it might seem… The author of The Great From Race and Other Poems has created a collection of short poems that celebrate trees and the amazing variety of ways they touch our lives. Deceptively simple verses reveal what trees think about and what they say to one another, as well as how they look and all the things they do for us. Humor and an unerring ear for the sounds of language make these poems an irresistible read-aloud; the luminous oil paintings evoke a country setting and the children who enjoy it through the year.

Little Dog and Duncan

by Kristine O’Connell George

The endearing characters from Little Dog Poems are back—and this time the little girl and her little dog have a very large overnight visitor. Duncan is so big that he plays fetch with a log instead of a stick, his head alone fills Little Dog’s bed, and he takes up way more than his share of the backseat. Thirty short, playful poems, narrated by the little girl and illustrated with delicate watercolors, affectionately observe the contrasting canines and are an appealing introduction to poetry for very young readers.

Swimming Upstream

by Kristine O’Connell George

Award-winning poet Kristine O’Connell George turns her attention to the middle school experience. The first year brings an array of challenges: making new friends, moving from class to class, tests and homework, changing for PE, gossip, school dances, and, of course, budding romance. Short, accessible poems in a variety of forms, but all in a single voice—that of a new middle schooler—evoke the memorable moments of the school year.

We Go Together

by Calef Brown

Silliness and sentimentality have free rein in this “curious selection” of childlike poems about love and friendship, each accompanied by an equally absurd, stylized acrylic painting. We Go Together! book makes an offbeat Valentine’s gift for anyone with a good sense of humor and a penchant for wordplay.

Hallowilloween Nefarious Silliness

by Calef Brown

Welcome to the spooky side of Calef Brown’s imagination, where things are just as scarily silly as they seem!

It’s a magic night, a silly, spooky scene.

Are you ready for Hallowilloween?

Flamingos on the Roof

by Calef Brown

In the very near future you will find yourself dining on Snow Flurry at the famous Weatherbee’s Diner. Everyone will be there—Bob and Bossy Casey, Medusa’s sister Sally, both of the Appleton Twins, and Mr. Andy Mandolin singing “Biscuits in the Wind.” Remember him? You will also meet Angus, visit the silly Soggy Circus, and as soon as the moon is out (unless there’s an eclipse), you may even glimpse a Tiny Baby Sphinx!

Partly Cloudy

by Gary Soto

The fleeting emotions of teenagers, as changeable as the weather, ring true in these emotionally resonant poems. Told from the point of view of both boys and girls, narrators of various ethnicities fall in love for the first time, pine over crushes, and brood over broken hearts.Tender, lighthearted, and surprising, this collection will capture teens, tweens, and anyone who remembers what it’s like to be a young person in love.

A Fire in My Hands
Revised and Expanded Edition

by Gary Soto

Few writers capture the everyday moments of life like Gary Soto. In direct and vivid poems, he draws from his own youth in California’s Central Valley to portray the joys and sorrows of young people. His writing focuses on Latino characters, yet speaks to readers of all ethnicities.

Acclaimed by educators and unavailable since 1998, A Fire in My Hands has been revised and expanded in this new edition.

This title has been selected as a Common Core Text Exemplar (Grades 6-8, Poetry)

Edgar Allen Poe’s Pie

by J. Patrick Lewis

Is this poetry? Math? A brainteaser? Yes! It’s all that and more. The poet J. Patrick Lewis has reimagined classic poems—such as Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” and Langston Hughes’s “April Rain Song”—and added a dash of math. Between the silly parodies and the wonderfully wacky art, kids will have so much fun figuring out the puzzles, they won’t guess they’re learning! Answers appear unobtrusively on each page, and engaging information about the original poets is included. Math games and concepts,poetry and poet biographies—it’s all so cleverly put together. This funny book is a treat for fans of words and numbers alike.

BookSpeak!

By Laura Purdy Salas

A collection of wacky, whimsical poems about books and all the treasures they contain.Laura Purdie Salas, the acclaimed author of Stampede!, is back with another collection of wild and weird, wacky and winsome poems about all the magic to be found on a single bookshelf. In BookSpeak!, each poem gives voice to a group that seldom gets a voice . . . the books themselves! Characters plead for sequels, book jackets strut their stuff, and we get a sneak peek at the raucous parties in the aisles when all the lights go out at the bookstore!

Stampede!

By Laura Purdy Salas

An inventive poetry collection that shows the wild side of first- and second-graders at school.These 18 funny and imaginative poems observe students in their natural habitat and reveal their unusual behavior, crazy communication, and very healthy appetites. Whether they’re in the classroom, on the playground, or in the cafeteria, school brings out the animal in all of them.

A Stick is an Excellent Thing

By Marilyn Singer

Lyrical poems and bold illustrations capture the energy of a group of children in one neighborhood as they amuse themselves over the course of a summer day.

The Superheroes Employment Agency

By Marilyn Singer

From Blunder Woman and Muffy the Vampire Sprayer to Stuporman and The Bulk, meet the members of the Superheroes Employment Agency—lovable misfits with oddball powers who make up for their lack of fame with an eagerness to please and a can-do attitude. These humorous, kid-friendly poems are sure to entertain while introducing readers to poetry in a fun, lighthearted, and accessible way.

Button Up!

By Alice Schertle, Petra Mathers

Did you actually think shoes, jackets, and hats didn’t have personalitites? Think again! The outfits in this book are brought to vivid life by Alice Schertle’s wry poetry and Petra Mathers’s exuberant cast of young animal characters. From Joshua’s cozy jammies to Emily’s frilly undies, the duds on display in this perfectly stitched poetry collection are as unique as the critters who wear them.

Guyku

by Bob Raczka

When you’re a guy, nature is one big playground—no matter what the season. There are puddles to splash in the spring, pine trees to climb in the summer, maple seeds to catch in the fall, and icicles to swordfight with in the winter.Nature also has a way of making a guy appreciate important stuff—like how many rocks it takes to dam up a stream, or how much snow equals a day off from school.

Stanza

By Jack E. Davis, Jill Esbaum

There’s a slobbery thug in town, and his name is Stanza. He bullies everybody. He eats chicken pot pie. And . . . he writes poetry. On the sly. At night. Because he’s extremely afraid his bully brothers will find out. But Stanza doesn’t let that stop him from entering one of his poems into a jingle contest. Does he win? Well, what if he did . . . not?

Steady Hands

By Tracie Vaughn Zimmer

In this collection of free-verse poems, inspired by Walt Whitman’s I Hear America Singing, Tracie Vaughn Zimmer celebrates workers and the doing of work. The poems are short and direct, with strong, fresh images, and readers can easily imagine themselves in the roles she portrays: welder, librarian, surgeon, retail clerk, camp counselor. The illustrations are as original as the text—amazing multilayered collages made of paper, found objects, ephemera, photographs, dried flowers, and archival images. Steady Hands is sure to inspire discussion, creative writing, art projects, and new answers to the old question: What do you want to do when you grow up?

Old Possums Book of Practical Cats

by T. S. Eliot, Axel Scheffler

T. S. Eliot’s playful cat poems have delighted readers and cat lovers around the world ever since they were first published in 1939. Now with vibrant illustrations by the award-winning Axel Scheffler, this captivating edition makes a wonderful new home for Mr. Mistoffelees, Growltiger, the Rum Tum Tugger, Macavity the mystery cat, and many other memorable strays.

This title has been selected as a Common Core Text Exemplar (Grades 2-3, Read Aloud Poetry)

The Wild Book

wild Book

By Margarita Engle

Fefa struggles with words. She has word blindness, or dyslexia, and the doctor says she will never read or write. But her mother gives Fefa a blank book filled with clean white pages. “Think of it as a garden,” she says. Soon Fefa starts to sprinkle words across the pages of her wild book. She lets her words sprout like seedlings, shaky at first, then growing stronger and surer with each new day. And when her family is threatened, it is what Fefa has learned from her wild book that saves them.

A Visit to William Blake’s Inn

by Nancy Willard
illustrated by Alice and Martin Provensens

Inspired by William Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience, this delightful collection of poetry for children brings to life Blake’s imaginary inn and its unusual guests.

Frog Went A-Courtin’

by John Langstaff
illustrated by Feodor Rojankovsky

“A favorite old nursery ballad now appears in resplendent new dress. . . . Illustrator Feodor Rojankovsky somehow manages to combine quaintness with sophistication and his doughty frog, the coy mouse . . . and others make charming company.”
The New York Times Book Review

Lemonade War author Jackie Davies discusses poetry techniques for kids

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