Friday, April 6, 2012

Fictional Favorites, part three

This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

Today we're welcoming authors April Halprin Wayland and Laura Purdie Salas. April chose Harold of Crockett Johnson's Harold and the Purple Crayon for her Fictional Favorites contribution.

April says:

Harold is a good friend of mine. And because the moon is a main character of this story, I searched for moon poems Harold might like. I also searched for moon songs.

In the poem, Harold said he particularly liked the last lines. And the song is exactly how he felt when he was searching in the big city and no one was around -- it was very lonely.

Phases of the Moon
by Elinor Wylie

Once upon a time I heard
That the flying moon was a Phoenix bird;
Thus she sails through windy skies,
Thus in the willow's arms she lies;
Turn to the East or turn to the West
In many trees she makes her nest.
When she's but a pearly thread
Look among birch leaves overhead;
When she dies in yellow smoke
Look in a thunder-smitten oak;
But in May when the moon is full,
Bright as water and white as wool,
Look for her where she loves to be,
Asleep in a high magnolia tree.


Everyone's gone to the moon
by Jonathan King

Streets full of people, all alone
Roads full of houses, never home
Church full of singing, out of tune
Everyone's gone to the moon

Eyes full of sorrow, never wet
Hands full of money, all in debt
Sun coming out in the middle of June
Everyone's gone to the moon

Long time ago
Life had begun
Everyone went to the sun

Cars full of motors, painted green
Mouths full of chocolate-covered cream
Arms that can only lift a spoon
Everyone's gone to the moon

Everyone's gone to the moon
Everyone's gone to the moon


Laura Purdie Salas brings us poems for characters from three books: Katla from Stork and Frost by Wendy Delsol, Anna from Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler, and Vicky Austin (Laura's favorite Madeleine L'Engle character) from Moon by Night, Troubling a Star, Ring of Endless Light, and others.

Laura says:

Katla from Stork and Frost by Wendy Delsol would love Skating by Barbara Juster Esbensen. She falls in love with an especially wintry boy when she moves to northern Minnesota, and I think she'd enjoy this poem that captures the beauty and the danger of winter:

by Barbara Juster Esbensen

We glitter and fly
Beneath the sky
and lean against the gale.

Our feet wear blades
Of diamond dust;
We etch a frosty trail.

The brittle pond
Is ringed with snow,
The pines are brushed with black.

Around we skim,
around the rim,
Around the rim, and back.


Anna from Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler would relate to my acrostic Top Secret from BookSpeak! Poems About Books. She captures her secrets in a journal, and it's the only place where it's safe (she thinks) to let her true feelings out.

by Laura Purdie Salas

Describe your desires and they become mine.
I’m a treasure box where feelings can shine.
All thinkers need pages where dreams can take flight.
Reveal all
Your secrets, one entry per night.


Vicky Austin would adore The Blue Whale by David Elliott from In the Sea. It has an otherworldiness to it and an appreciation of the magical beauty in our own world. It also reminds me somewhat of the poetry that Vicky herself reads and writes.

The Blue Whale
by David Elliott

Rises to the surface,
an island, a mountain.
All fluke and fin and fountain,

the largest animal alive

sings a chanty deep and slow
of winds that rage and storms that blow,
of shipwrecked sailors down below--
oh, where they are we cannot go--

and then...

she dives!


Thanks so much, April and Laura, for sharing your Fictional Favorites today!

Robyn at Read, Write, Howl has the Poetry Friday round-up.


tanita davis said...

What a nifty idea! And I LOVE that journal poem of Laura's.

Hannah Ruth Wilde said...

In my life, the moon is my favorite constant. April, thanks for sharing these. Laura, i was reminded of Filley Pond - our town ice skating rink - where I etched many memories.

laurasalas said...

I love that top moon poem, April--thank you for introducing me to it! Those lines:

When she dies in yellow smoke
Look in a thunder-smitten oak;

Oooh. Goosebumps!

And I am also now humming "Ticket to the Moon," a wonderful science-fiction ELO song. Favorite verse:

Got a ticket to the moon
I'll be rising high above the earth so soon
And the tears I cry might turn into the rain
That gently falls upon your window
You'll never know.

Fun, Tabatha! Thanks for having me!

jama said...

What a wonderful potpourri of poems! It's nice thinking about these characters again and interesting to see what poems people have chosen for them. :)

Myra Garces-Bacsal from GatheringBooks said...

I love all the poems but what struck me most of all was Vicky Austin's The Blue Whale - A ring of endless light remains an all-time favorite. I always quote several lines from this lovely book in my class. How lovely to have a poem be given to sweet Vicky Austin. :)

Author Amok said...

Hi, Tabatha. I love "Phases of the Moon." I have never heard the moonlight described in terms of the specific -trees and leaves it touches. The imagery is lovely.

Betsy said...

So many good lines! I connected the most to "Everyone's gone to the moon." As I reread it over and over I was drawn to "Roads full of houses, never home" and "Eyes full of sorrow, never wet." I can see these so clearly and maybe because I see these images in life I connect to them here. Thank you for the lovely poems.

Robyn Hood Black said...

Such a creative series! Thanks Tabatha, and thanks to April and Laura for these delightful, thoughtful contributions. :0)

Mary Lee said...

More great picks! Fun stuff!!

M Pax said...

What amazing poets and poetry. I love anything to do with the Moon. :)

Tara said...

I was so looking forward to this weeks' selection, and what a reward! I especially loved Harold's choice - perhaps because he was such a favorite of my kids, but also because the poem is so lovely and evocative. Thanks, Tabatha!

April Halprin Wayland said...

Tabatha--this is such a fun idea...and an interesting way of making me decide who to choose and

I love Barbara Juster Esbensen's "our feet wear blades of diamond dust"...I'm swooning!


Ruth said...

Agreeing with everyone that this is such a great idea.

Wendy Delsol said...

What a lovely poem.
Thank you, Laura.
Katla approves.
I approve.
So fun to stumble upon!
Wendy Delsol