Poetry Friday: Earth Magic

Earth Magic by Dionne Brand (Kids Can Poetry, 2006), illustrated by Eugenie Fernandes of One Hen fame, is a delightful book of poems celebrating the childhood memories of acclaimed Canadian poet Dionne Brand.  Brand grew up in  Guayguayare, Trinidad.   The book was originally published in 1979 in homage to the Caribbean people whose lives Brand captures well in the poems.  In them, we meet, for example, the “Fisherman,” the “Bottleman,” and “Old Woman.”  We also meet the mystical forces of nature often personified — there’s the river of  “deep green face” in “River” or the ‘day’ coming in “on an old brown bus/with two friends” in “Morning” or the wind describing his/her actions in the first person:

I heard a song and carried it with me
on my cotton streamers,
I dropped it on an ocean and lifted up a wave
with my bare hands

Fernandes does a wonderful job of illustrating these personifications with her colorful signature imagery and style.   Check out some of the images from this book in PaperTigers Illustrator’s Gallery.   The combination of Fernandes’ art with Brand’s poetry makes for compelling reading and viewing.

Poetry Friday this week is hosted by Jama at Jama’s Alphabet Soup.


9 Responses to “Poetry Friday: Earth Magic”

  1. Renee LaTulippe Says:

    Sounds wonderful, this book! I’m currently compiling a TBR list of poetry collections, and will add this one. Thanks for sharing!

  2. jama Says:

    Thanks for featuring this. Looks fascinating and lovely. Would love to learn more about the Caribbean :).

  3. Joyce Ray Says:

    I loved Fernandes’ illustrations in Just One Hen. Thanks for highlighting Earth Magic. I’ll look for it.

  4. Ruth Says:

    Looks great! I’m sure my students in Haiti could relate to this book.

  5. Sally Says:

    Thanks for dropping in and leaving your comments. Yes, this is a wonderful book and I just love Fernandes’ illustrations. It was a stumble-upon in the library for me, and I found it a pleasurable read.

  6. Mary Lee Says:

    Oooh! I loved JUST ONE HEN! I’ll look for this one…

  7. Myra from GatheringBooks Says:

    Oohlala, sounds like a luscious book! Would look for this one.