Low Song

Overview

I like things that come nice and low
Falling leaves and falling snow...
Hushaby tunes
And little new moons

A tribute to the nature around us as well as a lullaby, Eve Merriam and Pam Paparone's Low Song evokes that special world of wonder and imagination only children can know.

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Overview

I like things that come nice and low
Falling leaves and falling snow...
Hushaby tunes
And little new moons

A tribute to the nature around us as well as a lullaby, Eve Merriam and Pam Paparone's Low Song evokes that special world of wonder and imagination only children can know.

Rhyming text celebrates various aspects of the world, from falling leaves and falling snow to hushaby tunes and little new moons.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Pitch-perfect illustrations by Paparone (Fire Fighters) contemporize this 1962 rhyme by Merriam (1916-1992), author of Blackberry Ink and The Inner City Mother Goose. The poem celebrates objects that appear at a child's-eye level: "I like things that come nice and low/ Falling leaves and falling snow." Some familiar things, like "Pebbles/ Shells/ All flowery smells" can be found in most any neighborhood, while the more fanciful lists offer tongue-twisting fun ("Heels/ Wheels/ Flippery seals and slippery eels/ Ladybugs/ Plugs/ Snuggly puppy hugs"). Only "the morning sound of the milkman's feet" seems anachronistic. Paparone's cheerful acrylic paintings strike a balance between midcentury American picture books and present-day productions. Her ruddy-cheeked children, tidy townhouses and country scenes call to mind Leonard Weisgard's illustrations, and the artist updates this vision with an ice cream palette of strawberry pink, custard yellow and blueberry purple. Devotees of Margaret Wise Brown will find much to admire in this homey volume, with its rhythmic, repetitive verses and golden-age visual allusions. Ages 3-6. (Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
A warm brown dachshund on the bright pink-and-orange cover sets the mood for this interpretation of a poem that begins, "I like things that come nice and low/ Falling leaves and falling snow." Pictures of smiling, active toddlers very literally illustrate the words "Puddles to jump/ Sand to dump/ Slidealong floors/ Cellar doors," and so forth. Nothing is left to the imagination, which may be okay, but the juxtaposition of vivid depictions of disparate activities emphasizes the individual words rather than the connections among them or the meaning of the poem as a whole. This cheerful catalog of images may appeal to the preschoolers for whom it is intended, if it does not confuse and bore them, but what has happened to the poem? The insistent visuals overwhelm the "low" sounds of the song, the "hushaby tunes" and "little new moons," and the mood of quiet contemplation. 2001, Margaret K. McElderry, $16.00. Ages 3 to 6. Reviewer: Linnea Hendrickson
School Library Journal
PreS-K-Paparone gives a contemporary look to Merriam's collection of verses originally published in 1962. Acrylic paintings feature a multicultural cast of cheerful, round-faced children; perky, idealized animals; and stylized settings. A mix of double-page, single-page, and vignette illustrations complements the variable rhythm of the text. However, the verses celebrate a bewildering array of subjects. "Low" activities range from jumping, sliding, and somersaulting to smelling flowers and wading in water, to name just a few. "Low" things include "Dachshunds' backs/Sidewalk cracks" and the "morning sound of the milkman's feet" as well as sleeping giraffes, falling leaves, and other items and experiences of the natural world. While some of the images presented will appeal to the intended audience (puppies, bunnies, and butterflies), others may baffle them (are there places where the milkman still makes his rounds?) or leave them cold ("A cow's tongue licking over/Pink and purple clover" just isn't that interesting visually). The effort to illustrate every aspect of the wide-ranging poem unfortunately gives the book a disjointed look that works against the appeal of the bouncing, affectionate text. Still, fans of Merriam's work will enjoy this title.-Lisa Dennis, The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Merriam (Where's That Cat, 2000, etc.) has a poet's gift for the sort of lively language play that delights young children with just a few well-chosen words, such as "Heels / Wheels / Flippery seals and slippery eels." This playful poem, originally published in 1962, functions as a concept book about actions, animals, and objects found on or near the ground, at just the right height for children to observe with all their senses. Some of the choices are obvious (pebbles and shells), while others are more subtle, such as the smell of flowers or a new moon on the horizon. The rhyming couplets of the poem are skillfully integrated into cheery full-page or double-spread illustrations of chubby-cheeked children and amusing animals: a dachshund, a cow-licking clover, and a giraffe (curled up sleeping and thus showing how even a tall animal can be part of the "low" concept). Paparone (Fire Fighters, 1999, etc.) uses a bright palette of crayon colors and injects lots of humorous details into her thoughtfully composed illustrations. The rich language, rhyme, and rhythm of the text make this an engaging story for preschoolers and a logical choice for new readers too, who might try writing their own "High Song" sequels. (Picture book. 3-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689828201
  • Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
  • Publication date: 3/1/2001
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 6 Years

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