Sweet Corn

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Lemonade stands, bike rides, treehouses—moments as simple and magical as sweet corn in summer. James Stevenson—poet, author, artist, actor, and much more—captures these precious snapshots of life in this delightful poetry collection. Twenty-eight poems, combined with soft, colorful illustrations, will bring smiles, laughs, and memories of special times experienced by every child.

A collection of short poems with titles such as ...

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Overview

Lemonade stands, bike rides, treehouses—moments as simple and magical as sweet corn in summer. James Stevenson—poet, author, artist, actor, and much more—captures these precious snapshots of life in this delightful poetry collection. Twenty-eight poems, combined with soft, colorful illustrations, will bring smiles, laughs, and memories of special times experienced by every child.

A collection of short poems with titles such as "Screen Door," "Bike Rental," and "Photo Album."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
PW called this diverse collection of 62 short poems, highlighted by the author's signature minimal watercolor and black-pen drawings, "spirited and kid-pleasing." Ages 8-12. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Snappy graphic design contributes almost as much as Stevenson's loose, minimal watercolor and black-pen drawings in establishing the festive look of this diverse collection of 62 short poems. The text of ``Clothesline Vacation,'' for example, ripples across the page like the ``flapping, snapping'' clothes it describes. ``Roadside Stand'' asks, in balloon lettering, ``WHY AM I HAPPY/ THAT I WAS BORN?/ JUST ONE REASON (IN SEASON)''; the answer appears in huge creamy letters on the opposing page: ``SWEET CORN!'' A selection of different typefaces helps vary the mood throughout. By turns clever, pensive or silly, the verses read like prose and rely mainly on analogies or unusual points of view for effect. ``The Bridge'' ponders ``young and old people'' seen ``leaning over the railings,/ Clutching thin strings/ That go down to the water'': ``Maybe they're fishing.... Maybe they're flying their kites/ Upside down.'' Spirited and kid-pleasing. Ages 8-up. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Jan Lieberman
The title poem of James Stevenson's latest collection demonstrates that poetry doesn't have to be long to be meaningful - "Why am I happy that I was born? Just one reason (in season) SWEET CORN!" Another expresses the universal sentiment of nostalgia over old photos in which "Everyone's smiling / Old friends are posing, giggling and hugging /... Nobody's angry, nobody's crying, / Nobody's fighting, nobody dies." His poems are simple, provocative, musical, philosophical, and just plain fun.
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-This collection of 28 poems is a hymn to fleeting experiences and impressions. As all Midwesterners (and readers of Garrison Keillor) know, eating sweet corn is a magical experience: ``Why am I happy/That I was born?/Just one reason/(in season):/SWEET/CORN!'' Stevenson's painter's eye captures moments such as watching people fish off a pier and seeing an old dog ``...trotting along the roadside'' visually and verbally-he carefully matches not only illustration to words, but also words to typeface. His placid cows, who ``...mostly stand there/Seldom climb mountains,'' are represented not only by an ink-and-watercolor drawing of a calm bovine, but also through substantial brown letters. In one selection, laundry hung out to dry dances in the poem's lines as well as in the accompanying picture. Through Stevenson's vision, the ordinary everyday world-summer storms, lemonade stands, rental bikes-is made extraordinary. A book to savor.-Kathleen Whalin, Greenwich Country Day School, CT
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688173043
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/28/1999
  • Pages: 64
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

The Bridge



Young and old people
Lean over the railings,
Clutching thin strings
That go down to the water.

Maybe they're fishing.
Maybe they're crabbing.
Maybe they're flying their kites.
Upside down.


The Store That Doesn't Have It



If there's something you want,
This store doesn't have it.
Well, maybe they have it,
But somebody put it
Over or under some place
Where they lost it.
They say they could get it

(But not very soon).

Screen Door



When fog blurs the morning,
Porches glisten, shingles drip.
Droplets gather on the green screen door.
"Look," they say to one another,
"Look how dry it is inside."

Sweet Corn. Copyright © by James Stevenson. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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