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How I Discovered Poetry

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A powerful and thought-provoking Civil Rights era memoir from one of America’s most celebrated poets.
Looking back on her childhood in the 1950s, Newbery Honor winner and National Book Award finalist Marilyn Nelson tells the story of her development as an artist and young woman through fifty eye-opening poems. Readers are given an intimate portrait of her growing self-awareness and artistic inspiration along with a larger view of the world around her: racial tensions, the Cold War era, and the first stirrings of the feminist movement.
A first-person account of African-American history, this is a book to study, discuss, and treasure.

From Publishers Weekly

Nov 11, 2013 – Nelson crafts a stirring autobiography in verse, focusing on her childhood in the 1950s, when her family frequently moved between military bases. Complemented by muted screen print like illustrations, Nelson's 50 poems are composed of raw reflections on formative events, including her development as a reader and writer. The political and social climate of the 1950s infuses the poems through references to bomb drills at school ("Everybody's motto is Be Prepared,/ so we practice tragic catastrophes"), the Red Scare, the death of Emmett Till, and the stirrings of the civil rights movement. Nelson's introduction to poetry reads like falling in love: "It was like soul-kissing, the way the words/ filled my mouth as Mrs. Purdy read from her desk./ All the other kids zoned an hour ahead to 3:15,/ but Mrs. Purdy and I wandered lonely as clouds borne/ by a breeze off Mount Parnassus." An intimate perspective on a tumultuous era and an homage to the power of language. Ages 12 up. Illustrator's agent: Marlena Agency.
How I Discovered Poetry
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biography
  • Published: Jan 14, 2014
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Seller: Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
  • Print Length: 112 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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