Funny Rhymes for Spring ‘09

Alison Morris - July 17, 2008

My first few glimpses of the spring 2009 lists have yielded a number of oohs and quite a few chuckles, several of them brought on by two forthcoming poetry books from Hyperion. Each of those books just HAPPENS to include a poem related to the topic of reading, I thought I’d feature each of those poems + one other here and in that way give you a taste of the good fun in store for you when you read these books in their entirety.

First, a reading-related poem from Food Hates You, Too and Other Poems written and illustrated by Robert Weinstock (Hyperion, April 2009) who is also the author/illustrator of the VERY entertaining Giant Meatball (Harcourt, June 2008).


You may not know your brain is eating
Every word you’ve just been reading.
Its appetite is most exceeding.
Food for thought, worth oft repeating.

The other poems in this book generally (though not always!) tackle the subject of more "traditional" foods, though in VERY untraditional ways! For example, take the double-page spread on which Weinstock has recreated the Great Green Room of Goodnight Moon fame but replaced its loveable bunnies with praying mantids. As if that doesn’t skew things enough, here’s the poem that accompanies that scene:


I ate your father. Yes, it’s true.
That’s what we praying mantids do.
His last words to me were "Adieu.
If only I could eat you, too."

Admit it! You chuckled, didn’t you? Maybe even guffawed? I thought so.

Next up: two samples of fun from Orangutan Tongs: Poems to Tangle Your Tongue by Jon Agee (Hyperion, March 2009), who is also the author/illustrator of the VERY entertaining The Retired Kid (Hyperion, June 2008) and many, many other books that provide entertainment for ALL ages. Truly.

The key here: READ THESE POEMS OUT LOUD. Seriously. Who cares if anyone hears you? You work in children’s books, right? You’re supposed to be weird.


Reading writing
When it’s written really rotten
Can cause your eyes and intellect to strain.
When it’s written really rotten,
Writing’s really rotten reading.
Yes, reading rotten written writing really is a pain.

Aced that one, did you? Well then here’s a REAL challenge for you:


I have a new Swiss wristwatch.
So does my old pal Mitch.
If you switched his wristwatch
With my new Swiss wristwatch,
Could you tell which wristwatch was which?

2 thoughts on “Funny Rhymes for Spring ‘09

  1. Becky

    These poems remind me of Shel Silverstein’s work. LOL- a career in writing/illustrating/publishing IN GENERAL has weirdness as a job requirement, I think. Whew! Saying them aloud can really take a lot out of a person.


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