Another winter morning,
another leaden sky,
geese float like decoys
without the will to fly.
Gray is in the water,
gray is here to stay,
another winter morning,
another winter day.
Pictures of me at David Harrison Elementary yesterday have already been posted on Facebook by others but I still want to say how much I enjoyed visiting with 4th grade teachers — Roxie McQuarry, Shannon Bossing, and Julie Vaughan — plus all three classes of 4th grade students.
The kids are into a poetry unit and one of my books, A PLACE TO START A FAMILY, is on their reading list this year. They wanted to know the differences in how an author prepares to write poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. They had a lot of excellent questions, always the sign of strong preparation in the classroom, and I enjoyed providing some answers. I’ll go back later to see how they’re doing so that will be another highlight of my year.
Sorry I’m still in the wheel. Here’s a good picture to rest your eyes. Jeff took it when he and his mother and I were at Table Rock Lake just after Christmas. I whine constantly that I could take pictures like this, too, if I only had a better phone. Truth is he’s just a much better photographer than I.
AFTER DARK was just reviewed well in Publishers Weekly. My thanks to my editor, Rebecca Davis, for making me aware of it.
Publishers Weekly—January 21, 2020 issue
After Dark: Poems About Nocturnal Animals
David L. Harrison, illus. by Stephanie Laberis. Wordsong, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-62979-717-5
MORE BY AND ABOUT THIS AUTHOR
Harrison explores the active nighttime hours of 21 nocturnal species—amphibians, birds, fish, insects, mammals, and reptiles are all accounted for. Scientific facts and lifestyle insights, some slightly veiled, are woven into poetic language in a mix of free verse (“Mama skunk/ knows the story./ Never play/ in an empty street”) and rhyme (“Firefly females/ watch from the grass,/ checking each flash/ as suitors pass”). Warmth and foreboding emanate from the nocturnal creatures as Laberis’s shadowed nightscapes show a hum of quiet—and not so quiet—activity in an otherwise sleepy world: a mother wolf oversees rambunctious pups, cockroaches tackle a plate of noodles, and a hermit crab lays eggs on a moonlit shore. Back matter includes additional (and clarifying) facts about each subject mentioned. An immersive volume of nocturnes for young animal enthusiasts. Ages 5–9. (Feb.)
Blog tour, signing, and presentation plans are coming along and will be announced shortly. For now, back in the wheel.