Is This A Poem? by Roger Stevens (Bloomsbury)
The third book in a series, a companion to What Rhymes With Sneeze and Off By Heart, this anthology of poems – new and old – is a must-have for the classroom and for the home of any budding young poet. The first volume explored rhyme in many forms, the second proffered poetry to perform; this third examines exactly what can be called a poem – and perhaps what cannot. It looks at some classic forms, like haiku, cinquains, acrostics and shape poems, which I’ve heard of; and some that I’ve not, like senryu and mesostic and univocalic verse. It plays with nursery rhymes, doggerel, rap, football chants and collage. It does indeed leave you asking ‘Hmm, is this a poem?’ Throughout the book are interesting comments from the author and there’s a great section on how to write your own poetry. A fun book that children will love but a useful one for teachers and parents, too.