Cricket Never Does: A Collection of Haiku and Tanka

Cricket Never Does: A Collection of Haiku and Tanka

by Kees De Kiefte, Kees De Kiefte

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Sheree Van Vreede
These quick three and four line poems look simple, but are really much more. Divided into four sections to represent the seasons, the poems are kept close to their truest form-nature. This collection doesn't shy away from the realities of nature either: "Feel the pale eyeballs of a dead cat ... / two peeled purple grapes." The Japanese forms used here are great examples for young readers who want to put their thoughts into verse.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 4-8A collection of original selections worthy of Livingston's status as a major modern American poet. Using the Japanese forms of haiku and tanka, Livingston reflects on the year's seasons. The uniqueness of each one is sketched in clear, economic language: spring's activity ("Whirring from fuchsia/to fuchsia, the hummingbird/shops for his dinner"); summer's lazy reflectiveness ("Even the moon lies/on its back, rolling over/to stare into space"); autumn's farewells ("One by one, circling/down to earth, these yellow birds,/these frail, falling leaves"). This collection joins Ann Atwood's Haiku (Scribners, 1971; o.p.); Harry Behn's Haiku Harvest (Peter Pauper Press, 1962; o.p.); and J. Patrick Lewis's Black Swan, White Crow (Atheneum, 1995) in offering readers stunning evidence of the beauty and power of the sparest of poetic forms. De Kiefte's pen-and-ink sketches support the work's quiet thoughtfulness. A book whose contents make it worth opening again and again.Kathleen Whalin, Greenwich Country Day School, CT
Kirkus Reviews
Livingston (B Is for Baby, 1996, etc.) presents poems using the traditional Japanese forms of haiku and tanka in a seasonal array, accompanied by de Kiefte's equally spare pen-and-ink drawings. "Not wishing to stop/his chirping the whole night long,/Cricket never does" is the piece that gives the collection a title. From such deceptively simple lines young poets may apply themselves to mastering this economic form of expression, for the examples in Livingston's slim volume set a standard. From the witty ("Now that Christmas is/over, poinsettias are/busy dropping leaves") to the startling call to the imagination ("Close your eyes! Feel the/pale eyeballs of a dead cat . . . /two peeled purple grapes") and the impressionistically evocative ("Floating in by way/of last night's late weather news . . . /a piece of lost storm"), there are constant flashes of the poet's vision, insight, and conviction.

Product Details

Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.64(w) x 8.56(h) x 0.36(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

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