for Words with Wings
by Belinda Rochelle
This terrific book for older children and teens pairs 20 poems by African American writers with 20 paintings by African American artists. This lively and powerful compilation introduces a range of African American writers and artists of the past 150 years, celebrating their creativity and their diversity in style, in experience, and in point of view. In her inspiring introduction, editor Belinda Rochelle emphasizes the role each child or young adult plays as a participant in poetry and art. She writes, “We must help give the poems and art their wings by bringing to them our own experiences and histories, and our willingness to let them take us somewhere new.” Rochelle has modeled one way of doing just that in her choices for this volume, pairing Georgia Douglas Johnson’s poem “Your World” with Robert Scott Duncanson’s painting “Landscape with Rainbow,” and Alice Walker’s poem “Women” with William H. Johnson’s painting “Harriet Tubman.” (Ages 10–16)
CCBC Choices 2002 . © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2002. Used with permission.
These are just some of the works of art you will find in this stunning collection that pairs twenty poems by distinglushed African-American poets with twenty works of art by acclaimed African-American artists.
Alice Walker's poem "Women" -- about women who "battered down/Doors/And ironed/Starched white/Shirts" so their children would get a good education -- is paired with the breathtaking portrait Harriet Tubman, by William H. Johnson. The tender "Little Brown Baby" by poet Paul Laurence Dunbar, and artist Romare Bearden's Family reflect the deep love parents feel for their children.
African-American identity and history are powerfully evoked in art and poetry about slavery, racism, and black pride. But African-American poetry and art have no boundaries, and these poets and artists explore many other themes as well, that will touch your heart, and dazzle your eyes.
This important collection inspires imagination as it pairs splendid poets and artists in a way that has never been done before.
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.