Dance With Me

Book Review From KIRKUS

"A lovely collection of 15 poems, graced with iridescent pastel illustrations. Everyday objects and events are given a new charm in these verses that capture a rhythmic dance, from the tap-dancing of raindrops falling on the roof in a summer storm to the hidden music as a baby dances with her reflection in the mirror. Even such unlikely 'dancers' as a gardener and basketball make appearances. Esbensen (Baby Whales Drink Milk, 1994, etc.) has a talent for choosing subjects, using rhythms, and finding language with ready appeal for her audience. Sunny or dramatic, Lloyd's illustrations deftly capture the tone of the accompanying verse. The pacing of the book is particularly nice: It begins with an invitation to the wind and the wind's reply, and ends with the still dance of sunlight through a dusty room. A fine addition to poetry and picture book collections, this is simple enough for reading alone and strong enough for group sharing. (Picture book/poetry, 6-9)"

Dance With Me


"Gr 3-6 -- In 15 poems, all manner of dancers move to all sorts of rhythms and reveal unexpected images in the most delightful ways. Introducing the book with an invitation to partner the wind, Esbensen highlights such diverse subjects as bubbles, waves, and dust, and sees surprising choreography in everyday experiences. Even the visual arrangement of words on the page reinforces the verbal images and cadences that explore movement. Trees '...lock crooked arms/ and step across the lawn.' Mirages '...slide on invisible feet.' Raindrops are '...high-stepping/hoofers of summer.' There are people here, too; a baby tapping a beat to her mirrored reflection, a woman dancing a staccato rhythm as she weeds the garden, two grandparents gliding to a melody of memories. Lightning takes the exuberant stance of swordsmen, and children shadow dance and race in the sun. Lloyd's lovely crayon and pastel drawings add a floating lightness to each page and suggest, rather than tell, what the poet imagines. (As in Esbensen's Cold Stars and Fireflies (1984), Who Shrank My Grandmother's House? (1992), and Words with Wrinkled Knees (1987), all Harper/Collins), readers will find new discoveries and fresh delight in repeated readings." -- Barbara Kiefer, Teacher's College, Columbia University, NY City

Background music The Grandparent Glide,
lyrics by Barbara Juster Esbensen from her book Dance With Me,
composed by Kai Esbensen,
arranged by Jonathan G. Smith.

Enjoy the orchestrated version of The Grandparent Glide with lyrics

Barbara Juster Esbensen Memorial

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