How I Discovered Poetry


Nelson, Marilyn. How I Discovered Poetry. New York: Dial Books, 2014.  978-0-8037-3304-6. 99p. $15.34. Gr. 7-12.

Written in poetry form, this book is a personal memoir of the famous author and poet Marilyn Nelson. Each page contains a beautifully written poem that invokes thought and critical thinking from the reader. The poems connect to tell the story of Nelson’s childhood as she lived in the 1950s. Readers get a firsthand taste of what it was like to be African American during the Civil Rights Movement, move from school to school with a military family, and live through the Red Scare in America.
This book is thought-provoking for both the 7th grade student learning about the Civil Rights Movement and seniors reading the book for pleasure. It was perfect for my 7th grade classes, who were moving from the subject of Civil Rights into a poetry unit with the Great Depression, since it connects both poetry and the Civil Rights. The winner of the Coretta Scott King Honor Award, this is a quick read that can be read in less than an hour!

811; Poetry (Memoir)    Nicole Starner, Biglerville HS/Upper Adams MS

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