Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Susan Marie Swanson - Wonders

(after the traditional rhyme “I Saw a Peacock with a Fiery Tail”)
Susan Marie Swanson

I saw a tiger
burning bright

I saw the sun
in the middle of the night

I saw a star
torn from a tree

I saw a leaf
holding a key

I saw a pocket
full of art

I saw a book
shaped like a heart

I saw a stone
coming untied

I saw a shoelace
wiggle and hide

I saw some tadpoles
buzzing round a cake

I saw a bumblebee
high above the lake

I saw a cloud
pacing at the zoo

You can see
these wonders too!

© 2010 Susan Marie Swanson. All rights reserved.

Susan Marie Swanson writes poetry and picture books that pick perfect details and have juuuuust the right words to tell their stories. For a reader, they're a treat, and for a writer, they're a master class if you study them. Perhaps this comes from spending 25 years writing poetry WITH kids not just for them or perhaps it's natural talent (or both!) - check out this interview or her site to see if you can decide - but whatever it is, it is an inherently good thing.

Susan's The House in the Night (2008) received the Caldecott Medal for illustrator Beth Krommes (the second such poet-to-Caldecott mentioned here this week - editors/illustrators take note!) and a slew of other awards and stars and the like. No wonder - it's gorgeous and an amazing read-aloud. You really should share it with children (and parents and grandparents) today so you can understand why I'm such a fan and so happy to have Susan Marie Swanson here as part of 30 Poets/30 Days.

Yesterday gave us Cancion De Mango/Mango Song by Jorge Argueta. Tomorrow, Weeds by Ralph Fletcher! For more on 30 Poets/30 Days and ways to follow along, please click here.


tanita davis said...

I think I'd like to see a stone coming untied. Now I want to know if it unties to base minerals, or what...

I love poetry which just feeds my crazy imagination.

Kelly Fineman said...

What a wonderful poem! It has given me poem envy.

Jane Heitman Healy said...

This poem is a real imagination-opener! Greg, thanks for another 30 Poets! I'm enjoying it so much, I'm featuring a link on my own blog post today

Cayne said...

Hey Greg, My middle school students are looking forward to new poem each day! Talk about motivation! Thanks!

Andromeda Jazmon said...

Love this poem! I am with Tanita - a stone untied? That's my favorite line. I am going to have to look for more of her.

Jules at 7-Imp said...

Lovely. Thank you both.

Lee Wind said...

Especially after last night's #kidlitchat on twitter, the idea of poems and picture book text being related seems so clear to me with Susan's "Wonders." I can imagine an illustrator being SO excited to make this poem a picture book. It was lovely to read. Thanks to you both,

Megan said...

Love the imagery of this poem - I could see it all and found myself grabbing a pen to doodle once I finished reading it.

Havi Brooks (and duck) said...

What a joy to read. I absolutely love it! Thank you.

Deborah Weber said...

This is wonder-ful indeed!

Anonymous said...

i really like this poem. i love poems a lot and so does my teacher ms.nisman.i wrote a poem.

when i walk through the woods i herd a wired noise i wonder what it was but i cant figer it...

Anonymous said...

im in the same class as the other kid on ms.mismans class any way i really like this poem!!!!see you on monday anonymous

Anonymous said...

oh no i wrote the wrong thing its ms.nisman sorry