Write Me Up

Just writing. Maybe someone will read it.

Book review on A Light in the Attic April 4, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews — Dorothy Lynn @ 7:58 pm
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She Silverstein was a poetic genius. The poems that he wrote for kids are silly and fun and serious and deep. He has poems about dragons and flying carpets and about misunderstood clowns and men with too many hats. A Light in the Attic is like a storybook, and very simple to read for adults, yet here are so many poems where I find myself thinking more about life and humanity than when I read poems written for adults. What I love most is that he doesn’t shy away from writing about difficult emotions and events in life that are hard to process. Just because his poetry is for children doesn’t mean that it has to be superfluous piddlefluff. (Yes, I made up that word, but it’s okay, Shel Silverstein said it was okay.)

Here are a couple of my favorites.

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Wednesday is for Shel Silverstein, who was awesome. February 27, 2013

I’ve been trying to get my students to write short, simple little fairy tales. Easy, right? They even get to write them in Spanish(their native language). I even gave them some ideas. They could write about either a talking tree, a magical food, or a flying carpet. But for some reason, it’s like pulling teeth to get them to write it.

I have this one student who asked me about five times yesterday afternoon if he could just translate a story into Spanish. I tried to explain to him that that was plagiarism  and that he needed to use his own imagination.

He comes in today and has three beautifully written paragraphs in excellent handwriting. I glanced at it and thought, well good for you! actually writing when you thought you couldn’t! But then I started to read it….”Habia una vez un arbol amaba un muchacho….” (translation: Once upon a time there was a tree who loved a boy)

Then I kept reading. And yup! You guessed it! He tried to pass off The Giving Tree as his own fairy tale about a talking tree. And for about three seconds I was thinking, Man, this kid is a good writer….and then I translated it in my head and went…WAIT A MINUTE!

Ahhhhh lazy teenagers…it’s the same no matter what language you speak I guess.

The good news is that I showed them the actual story, so they had to learn some more English.

So this post is for you, Mr. Silverstein. Thank you for writing a beautiful story that is so good my students want to pass it off as their own.