Today’s birthday post is in honor of one of America’s best-loved children’s poets, Jack Prelutsky. Mr. Prelutsky has done as much (if not more) for children’s poetry as Shel Silverstein. So today, September 8th, we celebrate this man and his poetry; if you’re not familiar with his work, read on for more fun!
In 2006, the Poetry Foundation named Prelutsky the inaugural winner of the Children’s Poet Laureate award. Awarded for a two-year tenure, the children’s poet laureate aims to raise awareness that children have a natural receptivity to poetry and are its most appreciative audience, especially when poems are written specifically for them. This award has also been given to MaryAnn Hoberman and J. Patrick Lewis, with Ken Nesbitt serving as the current Children’s Poet Laureate.
Most school-age children can’t help but love “Bleezer’s Ice Cream.” Mr. Ebenezer Bleezer has flavors galore, with things like Tutti-Frutti Stewed Tomato and Tuna Taco Baked Potato. What’s not to love about those combinations of flavor?! Other slightly wacky poems like “Ballad of a Boneless Chicken” and “Homework! O, Homework!” are included in a collection of poems entitled The New Kid of the Block. Mr. Prelutsky has also set his poems to music on the audio versions of his anthologies, including The New Kid on the Block, A Pizza the Size of the Sun, and Something Big Has Been Here. He often sings and plays guitar on most of them.
Author of over 50 books, a “greatest hits” anthology called Be Glad Your Nose is on Your Face, which is a compilation of his best work, came out in 2008 and features a CD with classic performances by the poet himself. Children and adults alike would enjoy reading or listening to any of these poems!
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