It’s World Book Day so a good time to review our favourite book of the year. This poetry anthology has been an absolute blessing over the past year and throughout two lockdowns, and it’s absolutely stunning – a must for every family.
I Am the Seed That Grew the Tree, named after the first line of Judith Nicholls’ poem ‘Windsong’, is a lavishly illustrated collection of 366 nature poems – one for every day of the year, including leap years. Filled with familiar favourites and new discoveries, written by a wide variety of poets, including –
John Agard, William Blake, Emily Bronte, Charles Causley, Walter de la Mare, Emily Dickinson, Carol Ann Duffy, Eleanor Farjeon, Robert Frost, Thomas Hardy, Roger McGough, Christina Rossetti, William Shakespeare, John Updike, William Wordsworth and many more.
This is the perfect book for children (and grown-ups!) to share at the beginning or the end of the day, or just to dip into.Blurb from goodreads.
This year has been a devastating, unprecedented and globally challenging one for us all. As we come to mark a whole year of living with COVID-19 and the lockdown restrictions it imposed, I wanted to share a book that really captures one of the silver linings of all this: slowing down, getting out and appreciating the wonder of nature all around us.
I Am The Seed That Grew The Tree by Fiona Waters and Fran Preston Gannon has sat upon our bookshelf since Christmas 2019 but it was lockdown last March that led us to finally reach it down and properly pour over its wonders. A collaboration by Nosy Crow and the National Trust it is an incredible collection of poetry which is beautifully produced. I fell in love with the beauty of it as soon as I saw it but, as happens all too often, it got tucked up on the shelf and forgotten. So how delighted we were to have it waiting as our homeschooling journey began.
It was a lovely way to start our day – a snuggle on the couch together and a poem (or two if we felt like dipping into another). It was perfect for exploring poetry with my two children aged 6 and 4 and also to help us have a go at our own. Crows by David McCord was one of many that gave us a lovely structure to play with.
A nature poem for every day of the year offers a great way to explore the seasons and all that nature has to offer through the beauty of words. If You Find a Little Feather by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers (25th March) was a big favourite of mine. And more recently Snowman Sniffles by N. M. Bodecker (22nd February) had us reading and re-reading its winter farewell. The children loved reading of tadpoles and robins, dogs and bees and dragonflies, and it was lovely to find poetry that further explored their school topics. The anthology has such a range of playful, relevant and highly enjoyable poetry to help get little ones (and all ages) talking and playing with words themselves.
If you’re looking for a quality poetry collection that is a delight for young and old, I highly recommend this one. There’s more information about the book on the website here and a blog to explore too.
Nosy Crow and the National Trust published another poetry anthology Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright more recently, a collection of animal poems that looks equally delightful and was shortlisted for Waterstones Book of the Year 2020. Either (or both) would be a a wonderful addition to every home.
We’ll be pulling ours out year after year thanks to lockdown finally giving us chance to slow down and really appreciate it.