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Nursery rhymes and counting books are wonderful for little ones. They love the rhythms of the words and the repeating phrases. But here are five special books of poetry for little ears—and they’re more than familiar, they’re literature for the young.

From Dawn to Dreams: Poems for Busy Babies by Peggy Archer and Hanako Wakiyama

This little book is a collection of poems for every part of baby’s day from getting up in the morning until tucking in at night. Funny, quirky, lots of fun for baby.


Animal Poems by Steve Jenkins and Valerie Worth

Beautiful illustrations and subtle, lovely words. Perhaps a bit sophisticated for children, but causing them to listen to the beauty of words and preparing them for deeper meanings.


Emily Dickinson’s Letters to the World by Jeanette Winter

When Emily Dickinson died, her sister, Lavinia, found over 1700 poems unpublished in the drawers of her desk. Jeanette Winter has selected twenty-one of these most suited to children. A good introduction to this wonderful poet’s work.


Grace for an Island Meal by Rachel Field and Cynthia Jabar

A boat trip to an island off the coast of Maine, sunny weather and a meal. The blessings of the beauty of our world. These are words from thankful hearts and children will love the prayer-like poems.


Some from the Moon, Some from the Sun: Poems and Songs for Everyone by Margot Zemach

This collection of twenty-six poems for children is filled with beautiful illustrations. Zemach says that “children deserve detail, colors and excellence.” They will find those things in this lovely book.


All of these collections may be found at