Saturday, 11 July 2009

Poesie per Aria - Chiara Carminati

"Poesie per aria"
by Chiara Carminati, illustrations by Clementina Mingozzi, Publisher Topipittori, 2009

Anyone who has met Chiara Carminati in person will understand, without hesitations, the reasons of my deep esteem, personal first of all and artistic of course, for this wonderful writer.

Chiara is like her poems: playful, joyful, light as breeze and deep, intense, of a density that strikes and refreshes at the same time. Her ability to play with words is, I believe, characteristic to those people who have in their inner a score that plays constantly: a music deeply connected to their soul.

Once again, in this beautiful book, Chiara gifts us with her great talent, with the generosity of which she is able: without savings. It is so rare to find people capable of such a 'elan and it would be a real shame to renounce to this book.

I hope that Chiara, and her publishers, won't blame me if I post a small shortcut of one of her poems here below: I believe it's important that you read her words, instead of mine, to fully get what I mean and - even if the bit won't be translated into English - I am sure you will enjoy the sound!


L'aria e' fiato, soffio e brezza
sulle guance ti accarezza.
L'aria gonfia, svela, spinge
con le nuvole dipinge
fischia e schiocca tra le fionde
si riposa sulle onde.

... (omissis)

The illustrations by Clementina Mingozzi are following poems with discretion, with sober linearity, completing them without being invasive.

For those who would like to get to know Chiara better, here is her site:

Friday, 10 July 2009

Paul B. Janeczko & Chris Raschka

Pronouncing those two surnames together might be harder than reading a tongue-twister, but you won't regret you did, I promise! Today I decided to feature a collection of awesome Poetry books, all published by Candlewick Press, the first one appeared in 2001 and is titled...

"A Poke in the I, a Collection of Concrete Poems"

Apollinaire would have been charmed by this lovely book, where poetry and illustrations are chasing and confronting each other to finally fuse into a unique lively result. In this book there are not just poetry and intensity but there are as well playfulness, imagination, and lots of fun: the best way to assure kids with a nice approach to poetry.

The second book was published in 2005...

"A Kick in the Head, an Everyday Guide to Poetic Forms"

A real guide to the different poetic forms, with a glossary at the end and technical explanations. A wonderful book, simple though accurate in which, amongst others, we can read poems from William Blake, Edward Lear, Bobbi Katz, John Hollander and William Shakespeare! Raschka's wonderful illustrations are not simply a description of the poems but, thanks to a very clever system, they provide a real visual guide that facilitates the identification of the different poetic forms proposed in the book.

The last, only for the moment I hope, published this year is titled...

"A Foot in the Mouth, Poems to Speak, Sing, and Shout"

As Janeczko says in his Introducion to the book: "Poetry is sound. Oh, sure, it's other things, too, but sound needs to be near the top of the list. To hear the sound of a poem, really hear it, you need to read it out loud. Or have someone read it to you.". In the index, the author divides poems in various categories depending if they are for One, two or three voices, tongue-twisters, short, bilingual or poems for a group. Among all the poems you will find Jabberwocky by Lewis Carrol, full of nonsensical words but rich in pressing and vibrant sounds. We find Shakespeare once again, an abstract form Macbeth, when the witches are preparing a disgusting magic potion. Hilarious! Raschka's essential images, once again, are not deceiving readers: he plays with the page filling it, getting into poems making the reading not simply pleasant but playful and fun. Another masterpiece for your bookshelves.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Wire News - Terrible Yellow Eyes

Illustration by Bill Carman

For all of Maurice Sendak's fans and, in specific, for lovers of Where the Wild Things Are, here is an interesting link where dozens of international artists have given their own reinterpretation of the characters, giving them new light through their imagination.

Illustration by Dan Matutina

Illustration by Cory Godbey

The Official website:

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Wire News - Sabine Sicaud (1913-1928)

For all those people who do not believe in children's soul depth, to their ability to understand, or to their intensity and sensitivity, I suggest a particoularly interestung reading:
Because litterature isn't high or low according to who reads or writes it...