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"...the imaginative, whimsical tone should easily resonate with children, and the child's finished poem, concluding "I am an animal child," encourages solidarity with wildlife. Throughout this delightful collection, VanDerwater (Read! Read! Read!, 2017) employs various poetic forms and attitudes, which enliven the reading experience, as do the vibrant, cartoon illustrations. Some Poem in Your Pocket Day information is included, and though this is connected to that celebration, this collection also provides an engaging introduction to both poetry and animals."


"Not only fun to contemplate, each poem also imparts information about its speaker, making for a group of brief lessons as pleasing as they are accessible about “life in the/ wondrous wild." 

—Publishers Weekly



Available Now!


by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

illustrated by Emma J. Virján

Wordsong/Astra Books for Young Readers

ISBN-10: 1635923867

ISBN-13: 978-1635923865


An ideal gift for children who love animals, this picture book is a celebration of Poem in Your Pocket Day and a charmingly illustrated collection of playful poems about 19 different creatures.

Fascinating information about the animals (yes, sea otters have pockets!); bright, bold artwork; and short, lively poems make this collection perfect for National Poetry Month–or any day of the year.

In honor of Poem in Your Pocket Day, a child imagines the poems animals would carry in their pockets, if they had pockets. What would your poem be if you were a hummingbird? Or a fox? Or a sea otter? These poems capture the essence of each animal, exploring what makes it unique. The hummingbird sings with its wings, the fox’s poem is its fiery tail flashing in the dark, and the sea otter’s poem is its secret pocket. What poem captures the heart of this child? One she writes about a child who loves animals.

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