Take Off Your Brave: The World through the Eyes of a Preschool Poet (Hardcover)
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See the world through a small child’s eyes in this enchanting collection of poems by a four-year-old, joyfully illustrated by an award-winning artist.
For scared-sugar things, you put on your brave
And you can take it off again, when you realize it’s OK.
And that’s it. Scary and sweet. Scared-sugar.
Four-year-old Nadim puts his words on paper and gives us a glimpse of how he sees the world: one filled with glitter, magical boxes, and cuddles with Mom. A place where school smells like daffodils and honey (and sometimes dirty socks), where Wednesdays are rainbow-colored, where fish in the sea make a shhhh sound, and where everyone has love, even baddies. The poems in this anthology make for joyful reading and are paired with vibrant, child-friendly artwork by Yasmeen Ismail that invites us to full-heartedly enter Nadim’s world. At once funny and sweet, gentle and zany, this anthology may just entice readers young and old to release the poet within.
About the Author
Nadim wrote these poems as a four-year-old. In addition to poetry, he likes building stuff, learning about history, finding insects, riding his bicycle, playing with friends, and reading to his sister.
Yasmeen Ismail is an award-winning illustrator and animator who has a love of inks, paints, and watercolors. Her debut picture book Time for Bed, Fred! was a New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Children’s Book of the Year. She is the author-illustrator of Christmas for Greta and Gracie; the author of Joy, illustrated by Jenni Desmond; and the illustrator of Nuts! by Lou Peacock. Yasmeen Ismail lives in Bristol, England, with her husband, their toddler, and Betty the cat.
This charming collection of original poetry is accompanied by vibrantly joyful illustrations. . . . Everything from cadence to word choice to imagery rings true to a preschool perspective, and audiences of all ages will enjoy the imaginative descriptions of and fresh insights . . these selections beg to be read aloud and will enhance classroom lessons and story hours.
The clear, expressive free-form pieces examine the cornerstones of a young person’s world: home, school, family, friends, sensations, memories, and emotions. . . . This unique collection will serve as an appealing introduction to poetry for children: reflecting their daily experience to them, bolstering their appreciation of the written word, and perhaps inspiring them to construct poems of their own
—School Library Journal
Accompanied by energetic illustrations full of buoyant, frolicking children of varying races, the results of [Nadim's] first year of writing are striking: imaginative phrases, perceptive moments, and poems that feel finished in a unique way, with some bits and pieces you’d expect from a 4-year-old, not at all a bad thing. . . Teachers can use the structures of some of the lines as jumping-off points for students, and kids will be delighted to see the work of a peer in print. The poems themselves capture the newness and excitement of being a child. . . A colorful, warm collection that young readers and poets will savor.
These pages collect poems that Nadim dictated to his mother, poems by Nadim’s sister, and some by his preschool classmates, too, on topics conceptual, experiential, and social-emotional. All feel fresh, spontaneous, and aware of important truths. . . With a loose line and sparky excitement, Ismail captures children of various abilities and skin tones in uninhibited play.
What on Earth could a preschooler have to say about the world? A tremendous amount, as it turns out — about love, school, flowers, life underground and favorite things. Some poems are profound in ways that only the very young, who wear their feelings out in the open, can be. . . . Nadim’s poems, both deep and light, are great inspiration for other young poets — and a promise of more exciting things to come from the young artist.
—The Virginian Pilot