The Power of Poetry

14 Oct

I’m still basking in the joy of yesterday’s Nobel Prize for Literature announcement. Although the Nobel committee awarded it “”for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition”, I think it was because it was his for the inspiration his poetry inspired in others.

Which gets me to today’s book, Patricia MacLachlan’s The Poet’s Dog.

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Publisher’s Summary:From Newbery Medal winner Patricia MacLachlan comes a poignant story about two children, a poet, and a dog and how they help one another survive loss and recapture love.

Teddy is a gifted dog. Raised in a cabin by a poet named Sylvan, he grew up listening to sonnets read aloud and the comforting clicking of a keyboard. Although Teddy understands words, Sylvan always told him there are only two kinds of people in the world who can hear Teddy speak: poets and children.

Then one day Teddy learns that Sylvan was right. When Teddy finds Nickel and Flora trapped in a snowstorm, he tells them that he will bring them home—and they understand him. The children are afraid of the howling wind, but not of Teddy’s words. They follow him to a cabin in the woods, where the dog used to live with Sylvan . . . only now his owner is gone.

As they hole up in the cabin for shelter, Teddy is flooded with memories of Sylvan. What will Teddy do when his new friends go home? Can they help one another find what they have lost?

This is a short book, a mere 96 pages, but it speaks to the power of poetry.

 

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