A. A. Milne – Now We Are Six

Young Milne with bear

Last night before I went to bed, I read that it was A. A. Milne’s birthday – January 18, 1882.  I have always been a huge fan and still count “Now We Are Six” as one of my favorite books.  It was given to me as a gift when I turned six and it has been a gift that I give to the six year olds in my life.

It is filled with smart and witty poetry on many topics that children (and child-like adults) love to read about – kings and dragons, shipwrecks and friendships, fooling adults and questioning adults.  Most of the poems are long-ish stories and are begging to be read aloud.  For example:

Sneezles
Christopher Robin

Had wheezles
And sneezles,
They bundled him
Into
His bed.
They gave him what goes
With a cold in the nose,
And some more for a cold
in the head.
They wondered
If wheezles
Could turn
Into measles,
If sneezles
Would turn
Into mumps;
They examined his chest
For a rash,
And the rest
Of his body for swellings and lumps.  

Don’t you want to know what happens?  There are four more stanzas of the poem and a clever, funny ending.  Ah.  Good stuff.  The Knight Whose Armour Didn’t Squeak, King John’s Christmas, The Old Sailor, and King Hillary and the Beggarman are all great stories, and the list goes on.  I’m sure I appreciate it more now than I did when I was six.  I know I included a few of the poems in my “poetry notebooks” in 9th and 10th grades, favorite poems we collected and illustrated (by cutting up old greeting cards and magazines – remember those pre-clip-art days?).

I also remember back when the internet was brand new finding a game of Pooh Sticks online and being so happy that I would be able to look at classic Pooh illustrations and learn about the man who wrote these books.

Does anyone else have a love of A. A. Milne’s work?  What is your favorite?

Off to read!

40 Things (23)

Pippi Longstocking (book)

Image via Wikipedia

Following along with Boof’s 40 Day Challenge leading up to her 40th birthday, next topic is:

23) A book that is a most treasured possession

Because of the flood, many of my childhood books were destroyed so anything that I have from my childhood is treasured by me.  It’s kind of funny, because I’ll be at my brother’s house and find a book that somehow ended up at his house but was inscribed to me and I’ll just steal it back to my house, thankful that it survived.  So I now own my Pippi Longstocking book as well as a Child’s Book of Prayers.  Yay!

Some of my favorite books were in high bookshelves upstairs, so I am still thankful that I have them – like “Now We Are Six” and the poetry books I compiled in high school.  When cleaning out my flooded house, the gravity of it all hit me when I picked up my book journal and threw it away.  I kinda lost it then.  Books that were surrounding my bed were all a loss – imagine that TBR pile disappearing!

How depressing that is!  I also treasure books that I’ve had autographed recently.  It was fun to read the books, discuss them with the author, and get them autographed by those fantastic women.  Good stuff.

# 23 on my list was to: Go to local art galleries.  I make it a conscious choice to visit art galleries and museums whenever I can.  I also do my best to support them in my small way by making purchases there for gifts or for myself.  I can’t afford big art but I can buy hand painted cards or earrings.  As I have said before, the first art museum I went to was eye-opening and made me wonder why I hadn’t been going to them all my life!

Off to read!

Poetry Month

magnetic poetry

Thankfully mine isn't in a pile like this. Image by surrealmuse via Flickr

I have always loved poetry!  When I was young, my aunt gave me the book, “Reflections on a Gift of Watermelon Pickle (Put Up One Summer by Felicity)” and there was hardly a poem in there I didn’t love.  Somewhere along the line I lost the book – but the miracle of the internet and online shopping put it back in my hands a few years ago.  I still love the poems in there – some even more now.  The poems are mostly light and humorous, but there were some heavy and meaningful ones, as well.

I still have the book, “Now We Are Six” by A. A. Milne, which was given to me when I was six (by the same aunt) – and those poems are precious and fun as well.  It is a favorite gift for any six-year old in my life.  Such fun poetic stories about King John or The Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Thief.  And of course, Pooh.

I also still have the “Poetry Books” we created in 9th and 10th grades, probably for National Poetry Month.  They are construction paper covers with pictures cut-out from magazines and greeting cards taped on the typing paper.  No clip-art or fancy graphics available to me in 1985.  But the poems I included were from “Now We Are Six” and “Reflection on a Gift…”, as well as from teen magazines – those sappy love or friendship poems found at the back of the issue!  I wrote a few as well, including a few limericks.

Lately, the most interesting things I’ve written are a few haikus.  They are a lot of fun.  I have great memory of sitting outside on my deck on a hot Memorial Day weekend with my cousin (that aunt’s daughter) reading and writing haikus.  I think many of them are lost, but I still have the book that was the inspiration. I also still have several versions of magnetic poetry around – I just love words!

I lost a lot of books in the flood, but I am thankful for these favorites that were on a shelf high enough to be saved!

Here is a favorite from “Reflections..”  I hopefully will post more favorites in the month of April.  I just love poetry.  🙂

Well, off to read!

Advice to Travelers

    by Walker Gibson

A burro once, sent by express,
His shipping ticket on his bridle,
Ate up his name and his address,
And in some warehouse, standing idle,
He waited till he like to died.
The moral hardly needs the showing:
Don’t keep things locked up deep inside —
Say who you are and where you’re going.