Monday, October 03, 2016

Guyku: A Year of Haiku for Boys

  Guyku: A Year of Haiku for Boys by Bob Raczka illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds.

Poetry that doesn’t rhyme?! What’s a Haiku? And Gezundheit! This little book is a terrific way to bring poetry into any boy’s life. The verses follow the rules of haiku, seventeen syllables long, with five in the first line, seven in the middle line and five in the last line. They paint a vivid picture with such feeling that every child will recognize and relate to the experience. For those of us a little older, time is erased and we are fast-tracked backwards to a time of skipping rocks on a pond, building a snowman, staring at the stars at nightfall, capturing a grasshopper.
Take a peek…
“In a rushing stream,
we turn rocks into a dam.
Hours flow by us.”

The book is divided into the four seasons, beginning with Spring. Within each season there are several haiku that capture the season and outdoor activities boys are drawn to as a result. The illustrations in this picture book are by Peter H. Reynolds, and are perfectly matched for the haiku. They are primarily sepia-toned with small splashes of color. Each illustration captures the essence of the poem beautifully and include pictures of boys from every ethnicity. Here is my favorite ‘guyku’:

“Winter must be here.
Every time I open my
mouth, a cloud comes out.”

If you like this book, you may like these books also offered by the Virginia Beach Public Library.

The Year Comes Round: Haiku through the Seasons by Sid Farrar.

Poem Runs: Baseball poems and paintings by Douglas Florian 

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