Who Shrank My Grandmother's House?

Book Review From HORN BOOK

"The individual poems make ample use of metaphor and simile. They are sometimes quite elegant, as when the poet describes a city frozen in crystalline brilliance inside a geode; at other times they are emotive....In every instance, the poems illuminate the familiar. A child falls asleep in his room at night to the sound of cars driving past in the street. 'Their tires / unzip the wet streets. Their / lights / stroke the ceiling / with yellow hands.' The representational art serves primarily as a precise and well-placed anchor for the imaginative ideas expressed in the words." --Nancy Vasilakis

Who Shrank My Grandmother's House?


"The first poem, 'Pencils,' is the best ('There is a long story living / in the shortest pencil'), but the others are not far behind. Unreliable cloud maps reshape with the wind; a geode contains 'crystal traffic thin as a splinter'; a white bird breaks into a prism of 'one cardinal one / bluebird and five / parakeets'; 'a rainbow will come / fighting your thumb / numb / on the nozzle' of a hose; sand dollars spill 'from the green silk / pocket / of the sea'; homework paper feels 'lonesome / for words and circles / and / spelling your name and / assignments.' The images here are clean, simple, and surprising....Both the familiar subjects and the bountiful white space open these twenty-three poems to a child's discovery." --Betsy Hearne

Barbara Juster Esbensen Memorial

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