Harley invites readers to
decode the hidden messages that appear in her eighteen animal-themed poems and
learn a bit about the natural world while Noyes awes viewers with stunning
photography. Of course you will find
lions, elephants, giraffes, and hippopotamuses but this celebration of African
wildlife also has some surprises. Kudus, bonobos, cape buffalo, bat-eared foxes,
African wildcats, and hornbills find a place among the more familiar crocodiles
One of my favorite poems is
titled Moody Guy. This rhino-inspired work begins:
Boulders for shoulders
Elegant horn --
A pointed reminder of the
Thick leg-pillars bruising
Do you see the beginning of
the message? When the first letter of each word is read vertically, the
complete poems says Beauty In The Beast.
Following the poetry, Harley provides information
about acrostics and encourages readers to invent some of their own. Additional information about each of the featured animals is offered for further reading.
A note from Noyes completes
the book with a look at the life of a wild-life photographer and a discussion
of where the photos were taken.
Consider this book as an inspiration for student poetry and for cross-curriculum connections.